Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Irish tea brack

I've been baking again (and I had all of the correct ingredients this time!). I spotted this recipe for this tea bread in the May edition of House Beautiful. They, in turn, had taken it from 'Homemade' by Clodagh McKenna.

The recipe (note: the fruit needs soaking overnight first):
The tea-soaked fruit
350g (12oz) mixed dried fruit (I used sultanas, currants and raisins); 300ml (0.5 pint) cold tea (I used Redbush); caster sugar, now the recipe says 120g (4oz), now I think that's too much, as I don't like things too sweet, plus the dried fruit is naturally sweet, so I put in 42g (1.5oz); 1 egg, beaten; 250g (9oz) plain flower; 2tsp baking powder; 2tsp mixed spice.
Flour etc being sieved into the sugar and egg
  • Put the dried fruit into a bowl and add the cold tea, soak overnight.
  • The next day, put the sugar and egg into a bowl and sift in flour, baking powder and mixed spice and mix together.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan, gas mark 4).
  • Pour the soaked fruits and any remaining tea into the bowl and mix together well. Now, I used an extra-large free-range egg for this and it being so large meant that I thought that the mixture was a bit 'loose', but rather than add more flour I added a handful of oatmeal.
The completed mixture
  • Tip the mixture into a greased 1kg loaf tin and bake for 1hr. My oven is a 'slow' cooker when it comes to fruit cakes, so I needed to bake the tea bread for another 15 mins. Check whether yours is done by sticking a skewer into the middle of the cake, if it comes out clean, it's cooked.
The tea bread ready to go in the oven
  • Tip the cooked loaf onto a cooling rack and allow to cool. (Apologies, I forgot to take a photo of the baked bread!).
To serve: slice and spread with butter and a cup of tea. Delicious.
The sliced and buttered tea bread ready to be devoured
Have a go at this recipe, it is really easy to make.


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