It might be old-fashioned, but I love tea loaf! It’s perfect for serving for ‘elevenses’ or as a mid-afternoon ‘pick me up’ with a lovely cup of tea ♥
It also makes a great lunchbox treat, after school snack, or tasty sustenance for long road trips. While Lil’ L still won’t eat dried fruits in trail mixes or granolas (still a texture thing apparently!), he’ll happily eat them in this tea loaf.
As cakes go, this tea loaf is pretty healthy. It’s filled with nutrient-rich dried fruits and wholegrain flour, contains a relatively low amount of sugar (compared to regular cakes) and it’s fat free!
I have my mum’s friend to thank for the recipe. I arrived at my mum’s house one day to discover this incredible smell wafting out of the kitchen. It turned out to be this tea loaf! Back home, I couldn’t wait to have a try at making my own. The original recipe contained an egg but I always bake it eggless and it turns out absolutely fine. I can’t actually tell the difference!
I’ve made countless loaves in the past year or so and I’ve yet to have a fail…
… that said, I’ve yet to attempt a gluten-free version of the loaf. Lately, every time I try baking gluten-free, it ends up a total fail! If anyone does attempt a GF version of this loaf, I’d love to hear how you get on.
This loaf is incredibly simple to make! You simply soak the dried fruit in a cup of tea for a few hours, then mix all the ingredients together and bake!
Hands on time: 10 minutes Soaking: 4-5 hours (can be left overnight)
Cooking time: 1hr 15 minutes
250ml / 8½ fl oz / 1 cup strongly brewed tea (I use green tea)
225g / 8 oz / 1½ cups mixed dried fruit (I use raisins, sultanas, goji berries, candied citrus peel)
113g / 4 oz / ½ cup unrefined caster sugar
1 TBSP marmalade (or apricot spread)
227g / 8 oz / 1 2/3 cups fine wholemeal (wholewheat) or chapatti flour (I use the latter)
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon or mixed spice
3 TBSP water
Soak the dried fruit in the brewed tea for 4-5 hours (can be left overnight).
Lightly grease a 2lb loaf pan and line the bottom with non stick baking paper (or use a non stick loaf liner).
Pre-heat the oven to 160C / 325F / Gas 3.
Ready, set, go!
Tip the dried fruit and any remaining soaking liquid into a mixing bowl. Stir in the sugar and marmalade. Sift in the flour, baking powder and spice. Add 3 TBSP water and stir until thoroughly combined. Tip into the prepared loaf tin. Spread the mixture evenly in the tin using the back of a metal spoon. Bake for 1¼ hours, or until a tooth pick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Leave to rest in the tin for 30 minutes or so. Gently run a knife round the edge of the tin, tip upside down and shake to release the cake. Place on a wire rack until completely cooled.
Stored in an airtight container in the fridge, the loaf will keep for up to five days. It also freezes well. (I always keep a few slices in the freezer for lunchboxes).
The loaf is delicious served on its own, or with marmalade or apricot jam.
Are you a fan of fruity cakes? If so, what’s your all-time favourite? If you’ve got any recipes, please do link up below.
Have a great weekend everyone! xx