My baking seems to take on a different form depending on the season and it is no surprise that I have opted to bake a fruit heavy, sweet, succulent tea loaf to comfort me during the darker nights. It is packed full of delicious fruits; raisins, sultanas, dates and berries and ideal for those with a naughty, sweet tooth.
Please note, you do have to leave the fruit to soak in tea for around 3-4 hours or overnight, if possible. I usually soak the fruit before work and finish the recipe when I get home. You can easily prepare this recipe when making your cup of tea in the morning.
4 Tea bags
500g Dried fruit (I used a mixture of dates, raisins, sultanas and berries)
125g Light brown sugar
250g Self-raising flour
½ tsp mixed spice
- Put the 4 tea bags in a bowl and pour 300ml boiling water over them. Leave to infuse for 10 minutes.
- Squeeze them out after 10 minutes and add the fruit into the tea. Leave the mixture to soak for around 3-4 hours (or overnight).
- Set the oven to 180ᵒc / Gas Mark 4 / 350ᵒF
- Stir the flour, sugar, spice and egg into the fruit mixture.
- Spoon into a tea loaf tin and bake for 50 minutes – 1 hour or until risen and firm to the touch.
- Wrap in greaseproof paper and keep for two days before slicing and serving, this helps to improve the flavour and keep the tea loaf fresh and moist. You may find that the top and sides are a little brown, I usually take a sharp knife and slice these off.
- Cut into thick slices and spread a little butter on top!
It is best served with a generous spread of butter (Lurpak is my go to) and with a nice warm cup of tea, peppermint was my choice in this instance. Keep baking!