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Singing Lily

Pies and Pastries
Lancashire, Cheshire

Large circle of shortcrust pastry folded over dried fruit and rolled until the fruit visible through. Sugared and baked. Well-known from local reports in Lancashire and Cheshire, but no definitive receipt has been found.

Our correspondent Colin Rigby (2022) tells us that; "I live in Tyldesley near Wigan. My mother worked in a little bakery in Stanley Street Tyldesley back in the 60s . She would make us singing lily cake all the time . Often when making a separate crust to go with the lobby another Lancashire dish (corned beef, diced potatoes, onion and water boiled up ). While the oven was on she would make singing lily on another tray using currants . Children used to call them fly cake as it looked like hundreds of flies had been squashed into the pastry. Brings back good memories."

Original Receipt from corresepondent 'Dawn' to the BBC Lancashire website, 2014

Make Shortcrust Pastry (plain not sweet) Roll into a circle 1/2cm thick.
Pile raisins into the centre then bring together pastry over them to form a parcel.
Make sure the pastry is joined together well. Then roll out again to approx 2cm till you can just see the raisins showing through top.
Sprinkle with sugar.
Cook in oven 190 till pastry is cooked.
Eat hot or cold - spread with butter. It's gorgeous when hot and the butter melts over it.

My Nan always made 'Singing Lily' with the leftover pastry from making a meat and potato pie.

Josephine Andersen says (May 2018) that, "My mother was from Bolton and often used to make this pastry. She also called it Skinny Annie. It is very easy and quick to make. I used to make it for my children. It tastes very good if spread with butter before eating."

[Unverified] Can you help find more about Singing Lily? - email editor@foodsofengland.co.uk

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