When MMIL (Marvellous Mother In Law) popped over for lunch recently, she brought a homemade Fruit Tea Bread with her. Not only was it delicious (especially toasted with a slurp of butter) but it stayed fresh for several days. It’s life was dramatically cut short when Annabel came to stay the night and found she could not stop eating it! Here is MMIL’s recipe which she has adapted slightly from the version she saw in the weekend Telegraph.
Fruit Tea Bread
350g dried fruit (I often add chopped apricots and dates)
200ml freshly brewed tea
50ml maple syrup
259g wholemeal spelt flour (or whatever you’ve got)
2tsp baking powder
1tsp mixed spice
1. Put the fruit in a bowl and pour over the tea and maple syrup. Leave to soak for a few hours, preferably overnight.
2. Preheat oven to 180/160 fan/4 gas. Line a 1kg/2lb loaf tin and line with baking parchment.
3. Sieve flour into a bowl, stir in the baking powder and mixed spice. Add the fruit and any unabsorbed liquid along with the eggs. Mix everything thoroughly and then spoon into the prepared loaf tin.
4. Bake the tea bread in the oven for about an hour. Remove and leave to cool in the tin for about 10 minutes, then turn it out and transfer to cooking rack.
5. Serve thickly sliced and spread with butter….(or should that be sliced and thickly spread with butter!)