Bara Brith

Bara brith is a Welsh tea loaf, sometimes called “speckled bread”. It’s made with dried fruit, soaked in tea and sometimes with yeast. This recipe is a non yeast version but is really easy to make, tastes delicious spread with butter and enjoyed with a lovely cup of tea….. something I drink a lot of, being Welsh!

I got this recipe from my Godmother who I fondly call Auntie Mary and met up with for lunch and a cup of tea on a recent visit to Wales.

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I met Auntie Mary along with my Auntie Pam and my Mum in my favourite Vegetarian Cafe in Cardiff called “Crumbs Kitchen”. I absolutely LOVE their fresh mixed salads served in wooden bowls and lush homemade soups. I have actually been eating here for over 35 years as the food is so good, so if you are in Cardiff at lunchtime, pop in to sample their fabulous cafe menu.

I also had time to visit my favourite deli in Cardiff, “Wallys”. This deli has been going for years and is an awesome foodie treasure trove full of amazing cheeses, dried delicacies, cured meats, nuts, beers, spices, olives, sauces and various other specialty deli foods from around the World.

My Auntie Mary loves baking as much as I do and we got chatting about my blog over lunch. We were talking about Welsh recipes and she then told me about her lovely bara brith recipe which I couldn’t wait to try out. I wasn’t disappointed. The addition of marmalade gives a beautiful orange flavour and the vine fruits plump up and go all juicy after soaking in the tea.

If you are looking for a lighter alternative to a fruit cake to enjoy with your afternoon cuppa then this is a perfect treat. You can also slice and freeze it if you decide to make two while you’re in baking mode.

Bake this tea loaf and enjoy a slice of Welsh heaven! Thankyou, Auntie Mary for your lovely recipe xx

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Ingredients

225g or 8oz of mixed dried mixed fruit
1/4 of a pint of strained tea
110g or 4oz of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of marmalade
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
3 tablespoons of milk
225g or 8oz of self raising flour
1 beaten egg

Method

Soak the fruit in the sugar and tea overnight.
The next day, add all the other ingredients and mix well.
Put the mixture into a lined loaf tin and loosely cover the top with foil for the first half of cooking to avoid the top burning
Cook for around 2 hours at Gas Mark 3 /170C/ 160C Fan
To test if it’s cooked insert a sharp knife into the centre and it should come out clean. The top should be golden brown and springy
Turn out onto a wire cooling rack and cool before slicing
Serve sliced and spread with butter.
Pour yourself a nice cup of tea and enjoy xx

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