Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Gus's Granny's tea bread

Here is one of those wonderful recipes handed down through generations, beloved and consistently reliable. In this case the original recipe came from my sister-in-law's grandmother, but I have adapted it somewhat (I think this happens to any recipe that gets passed on - it is in people's nature to tweak things and create their version).

Gus's Granny's tea bread
  • 225g mixed fruit
  • 250ml tea
  • 100g demerara sugar
  • 225g self raising flour
  • 1 beaten egg

Soak the fruit in the tea overnight. Add the remaining ingredients, stir, then beat well. Grease a 1lb loaf tin, spoon the mixture in and bake at gas 3 for 1 hour. Test with a skewer for readiness and allow to cool completely before cutting.


Now, you can see that the recipe is very brief, but there is more to it that you might first think.


The fruit

I despise and loathe candied peel, so my version of the 'mixed fruit' in the recipe is a 50:50 mixture of sultanas and chopped, dried apricots. I have also done it just with sultanas and just with apricots, both of which are very tasty alternatives. A strange but good third option is to use chopped, dried figs.


The tea

Any tea will do, but for a really aromatic, delicate result use Earl Grey. I make up the 250ml with two teabags if I am using Earl Grey.


Mixing and beating

When you put all the ingredients together, it does look as if it will never mix successfully, but have faith and be firm with the mixture. It will soon look good.



As this cake contains no fat whatsoever, you can feel very virtuous eating it. Or alternatively, you can spread it with butter and eat slice after slice when you come home from school!


  1. Ooh, love the lovely recipe, is similiar to barrabrith which I make occassionally (may have spelt that wrong). What I love even more though is your tablecloth!

  2. I recognise the fabric behind C! Although the stuff we were using on Monday wasn't oilcloth!

    Will try that recipe out on all our old ladies at work next week, they love coming in for a cuppa and a bit of cake.


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