ESSENTIALS

Guernsey Gache

Guernsey Gache

Gache is a traditional Guernsey fruit bread. It’s made with sultanas, raisins and mixed peel, and is not as dry as the plain fruit bread found on the mainland. The word “gache” is simply Guernesiais for cake, which makes more sense when talking about the alternative, gache melee, which is a variation on the spiced apple cake, traditionally made with windfall fruits. Regular gache is commonly found in supermarkets, and kiosks at the beaches.

Ollie buys gache from the Portinfer kiosk run by Daniel Le Moal Jr in The Sarnian book 2, Blowfish.

There are several different methods for making gache, and it’s unlikely that a traditional island baker would agree with all of them, but here’s one in rhyme form to make the ingredients and method easier to remember.

Mix a pinch of salt
into lightly sieved plain flour
(a pound will be enough)
then warm for half an hour.

Leave it in the sun
while you sweeten off the yeast:
a teaspoon of white sugar
will give the mould a feast.

Now add a little water
and stir until it’s pasty
then put it to one side to rest:
dense loaves await the hasty.

Unwrap some Guernsey butter
(by far the choicest fat),
dice it up and rub it in:
reserve none of the pat.

Half a pint of water next
(be sure it’s not too cold).
Form a well and pour it in,
then add the frothing mould

followed by a pound of fruit:
sultanas and mixed peel.
Go easy on the latter:
two ounces is ideal.

Stir it and transfer it
to a buttered baking tin
and when the oven hits two twenty
throw the whole lot in.

Bake for half an hour
then turn the oven down.
Cook for thirty minutes more
until the crust’s light brown.

Guernsey Gache

The local BBC station includes details of two different Gache recipes on its website.

The Sarnian Book 1: Dead in the Water

Read more about Guernsey Gache

A body on a beach, an impossible alibi and an unstoppable race against time!

Guernsey Gache appears in The Sarnian, the explosive adventure series in which the discovery of a dead body on one of Guernsey's most secluded beaches blows the lid on a world of intrigue and deceit.

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