Bara brith “speckled bread”, was requested by my friend Noni, whose birthday it was this week, so what better reason than to give it a try. This welsh tea bread was served, so this recipe reliably informs me, at Fortnum and Mason’s jubilee tea room using produce from the Prince of Wales’s Highgrove label. All out of Highgrove produce, I found a bag of mixed fruit at the back of the cupboard, brewed a jug strong tea, and carried on regardless…
So, Prince of Wales aside, this ‘bread’ was quick and easy to make. Even better, it tasted delicious (especially with butter) – think Malt Loaf crossed with Christmas cake.
All credit goes to ‘Magmu’ for this recipe.
225g to 250g (8 to 9oz) of dried mixed fruit
300ml (1/2 pint) boiling water
3 strong tea bags
170g (6oz) of soft brown sugar (I used dark brown sugar, some recipes say light muscavado)
225g (8oz) of self raising flour
1 large egg (I only had medium, and it was fine)
1/2 tsp of mix spice
1/2 tsp of cinnamon
Brew the tea bags in the water of 5 minutes, remove the tea bags whilst the tea is still hot add the sugar stir until dissolved.
Pour the sweet tea over the dried fruit cover and leave to stand overnight.
Mix together all of the dry ingredients slowly stirring in the egg soaked fruit and remaining sweet tea.
When the mixture has come to a thick cake like batter pour the mixture into loaf tin (lined with baking parchment).
Place into a pre heated oven gas mark 3 (top shelf) for approx 1 and 1/2 to 1 and 3/4 hours (check after an hour or so and if the top is burning cover loosely with tin foil).
Leave to stand for 10 minutes before turning out the cake onto a cooling rack.