Scotch Baps

Searching for something like the Aberdeenshire baps of my childhood, to go with butteries. I get closer every year – it’s all based on this old recipe

“A good soft eating roll can be made and sold as Snowball Rolls. A change in name from Scotch Baps by which they are well-known in some districts.”

  • 4½ lbs Flour (Top Grade)
  • 1 qt Water
  • 2 ozs Yeast
  • ½ lb Lard
  • 1 oz Salt

“Make above into dough and let it lie for one hour. Give a good knock up and in 10 minutes scale off into about 1¾ oz pieces [my reckoning – that’s about 40!]. Roll the pieces up round and flatten them out oval shape with a rolling pin. Place on sheet tins flour dusted. Pierce the top with a skewer or docker. When ready for the oven, dust liberally with flour. Bake in not too warm an oven and keep soft. The colour should be very light brown, flour on top kept white.”

Best current tweak for my kitchen


  • 1lb 8oz/675g white bread flour
  • 500ml water
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1½ tsps dried yeast
  • 2oz/65g butter or Trex
  • 1 level tsp salt


  1. Make a “sponge”. Take 4oz of the flour; mix in 1/4 to 1/2 tsp dried yeast, 1 teaspoon sugar, and about half the water; mix until smooth. Cover with cling film and leave for at least two hours.

  2. Mix the rest of the dried yeast with the rest of the water and the second teaspoon of sugar; leave aside for about 10 minutes until it becomes frothy.
  3. Mix the rest of the flour and the salt together. Rub in the fat. Add the reconstituted yeast liquid and the sponge. Mix well to a dough. Knead to a softish smooth dough.
  4. Turn into an oiled bowled, cover with cling film, and leave to rise overnight in a very cool place (fridge, or even outside). [OR – for an hour or more in a warm place.]
  5. Set your alarm for about 2 hours before breakfast time.
  6. Knock back the dough and cut into 12-15 pieces. Roll into balls and flatten them to ½ inch thick ovals. Place on greased and floured trays, make a hole in the centre with four finger, and dust well with flour.
  7. Allow to prove for an hour – or more, until well-risen. Preheat oven to 180C/375F/Gas Mark 4.
  8. Bake baps for about 20 minutes – they should be cooked through, soft, and very gently coloured.

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