The Hobbit; An Unexpected Party; Seed Cake

Whether preparing for an Unexpected Party or simply wanting to reawaken bygone traditions, this seed cake from The Hobbit is your go-to recipe.

  • Author: Bryton Taylor
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x


  • 2 egg whites
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 250g of butter
  • ¼ tsp of rose water
  • one shot of brandy
  • ¼ of a lemon rind
  • 1 ¾ cups of all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup of white sugar
  • 3 tbsp of caraway seeds
  • ¼ cup of candied peel


  1. Take 2 egg whites and 5 egg yolks and beat them together in a mixer.
  2. Mix in 250g of butter, ¼ tsp of rose water, and one shot of brandy.
  3. Grate in ¼ of a lemon rind and sift in 1 ¾ cups of all purpose flour, and ¾ cup of white sugar.
  4. Set your mixer on medium speed for 5-10 minutes until the mixture is fluffy and white.
  5. Stir in 3 tbsp of caraway seeds and ¼ cup of candied peel.
  6. Butter a round pan, scoop mixture into a 7″ round cake pan and bake in ‘a quick oven’ (pre-heated oven, ~200C/400F).
  7. When a wooden skewer is pushed into the middle and comes out clean, the cake is done (45 minutes to 1 hour)


This Hobbit seed cake recipe was created by deciphering and reducing from ‘English Housewifery Exemplified; In above Four Hundred and Fifty Receipts Giving Directions for most Parts of Cookery’ by Elizabeth Moxon (printed in 1764) and can be found at