I’ve been trawling the internet for fruit loaf recipes and found that although several of them had little bits that I liked the look of, none of them had all the aspects I wanted, so I played around and put together the following recipe.
Fruit Tea Loaf:
Serves: 10-12 slices (depending how generous you are!)
Prep time: 5-10 minutes plus soaking time
Cooking time: 1 ¼ to 1 ½ hrs
12oz mixed dried fruit
½ pint tea
8oz self raising flour
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp mixed spice
- Make the tea (I used two Tetley teabags) and soak the fruit and sugar for a minimum of 2 hours, or overnight (I set mine up in the morning after breakfast and continued with the recipe after lunch)
- Preheat the oven to 180C
- Lightly beat the egg and honey together
- Add the mixed spice to the flour and mix
- Add the egg-and-honey mixture and the tea-and-fruit mixture to the flour and mixed spice and mix thoroughly
- Lightly grease a 1lb loaf tin
- Pour the loaf batter into the tin and pop it in the oven for 1 ¼ to 1 ½ hrs till a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean
- Turn out onto a rack to cool
I had high hopes for this recipe and I wasn’t let down at all. I was quite pleased that I could do the preparation for it in the morning after having breakfast and then come back to it after lunch to finish it off after leaving the tea to soak into the fruit. All I had were raisins and currants, so I used ½ and ½ of those rather than mixed dried fruit, although if I’d had sultanas, I would have used 4oz each of those. I’d also like to try making this with a few glace cherries thrown in the mix to see how it turns out, as I LOVE those, but didn’t have any to hand on this occasion.
The texture is dense, but not heavy, and it’s a very rich, very moist, very fruity loaf that bursts with flavour. This is definitely one that I’ll be making time and time again. I might even make this instead of a Christmas cake. A big 5/5 and then some!