The fruited cake I made this morning is called Bara Brith, which is Welsh for "Speckled Bread" and I thought it would be a good recipe to ease you into the idea of really good fruit cake! Loaded with raisins (sultanas) and currants, this tea bread makes the perfect mid-morning snack with a cup a tea. This bread can be made with yeast or as I did today, with self-rising flour. It is claimed to be invented by a Welsh chef who added dried fruit and spices to dough creating a newer version of a favorite tea bread. There are similar loaves in Ireland--Barm Brack and in Scotland--Selkirk Bannock. I have made Black Bun, which is similar and Scottish for Christmas several times for my hubby during the holidays. I first saw this tea bread on the 4th season of The British Baking Contest (on PBS) and knew one day I'd have to bake it.
1 1/3 cups (300g) strong tea
1 1/2 cups (6oz) raisins/sultanas
1 1/4 cups (6oz) currants
1 cup + 1T firmly packed light brown sugar (8oz of muscovado sugar)
Measure the fruit and sugar in a bowl and pour the tea over it. Allow to set, covered, overnight on the counter.
Preheat oven to 300F-degrees (150C-degrees/Fan or 130C-degrees/gas). Grease a 2 lb. loaf pan (5" x 10" x 3 1/2" high) and line the bottom with parchment paper.
2 1/2 cups (10oz) King Arthur Self-rising flour
1 large egg
Stir the flour and egg into the fruit mixture until fully incorporated.
Spoon into the prepared pan and bake for 80 - 90 minutes. Testing with a wooden skewer in the center should come out cleanly.
November's apron winner is Mary Bolton! Please email me your address so I can send this lovely apron out to you ASAP!
I hope to have December's apron up shortly, however since my hubby had hip replacement surgery my days are 24/7 with chores and helping him through rehab. It's all worth it, but I'm going to need a much needed vacation when he's back on his feet! Happy Holidays to All!