I don’t bake often — don’t worry, this isn’t about to turn into a food blog — but for some reason I’ve had a craving for tea bread for a while. As a little ‘un I was given a slice by a friend and liked it so much I asked for the recipe. It turned out to have been from a Blue Peter episode and I scribbled it down on a piece of paper which I kept for years, pulling it out every once in a while when something quick and easy was the order of the day. And then it got forgotten. Until now.
Of course now it’s many years later and I completely failed to find the recipe, despite going through every cook book in the house looking for any loose scraps of paper. So I came up with an approximation, based partly on memory and partly on surfing around the web looking for anything similar. It cooked up just great — although my (electric, fan-assisted) oven tends to burn everything waved even slightly near it, so it’s turned out possibly a little on the crusty side on top this time.
So here’s my recipe. It’s quick and easy, it’s lovely warm, you can butter it if the fancy takes you, and with no butter or oil in the mix it’s a completely fat-free treat. Do let me know if you make it, or if you have any modifications to the recipe!
Low Fat Tea Bread
2 cups of mixed dried fruit
1 cup of hot tea
1 cup of soft brown sugar
2 cups of self-raising flour (or plain flour + 2 tsps baking powder)
Soak the dried fruit in the hot tea (I’m sure the Blue Peter recipe used to suggest leaving it over night — but I left it for just half an hour and it was fine).
Add the sugar and stand for a few minutes.
Fold in the flour.
Whisk the egg and fold it in.
Pour the mixture into a greased loaf tin.
Bake at 180°C / gas mark 4 for 1.5 hours.