Monday, 7 March 2011

Bara Brith

Recipe Number Five: Page 302.

I decided to make the Bara Brith the day before our friends arrived for 'afternoon tea'. I had a lot of things to make the following day. I have never made tea bread before and I have been meaning to try one for ages. Mary Berry says to soak the mix of dried fruit and sugar in tea overnight. As I was going to make it in the evening, I put it to soak at nine in the morning, so that the fruit would have plenty of time to soak up the sugary caffeine hit!

At about 7pm I put the oven on gas mark 2, which seemed a very low heat. The next part was so simple. All that was required was to add the flour and egg to the soaked fruit, pop it into the tin and put it in the oven! I found the combined mixture to be very runny and the colour to be a lot lighter than I had expected. I think, as it had muscovado sugar and tea in it, I imagined it would be quite dark. Anyway, into the oven it went. It remained in there for the recommended one and a half hours. I was not surprised when I took it out of the oven and it was still doughy in the middle. This seems to be a running theme, so I wonder if my oven is keeping to the set temperature. Anyway, on went some foil to cover the top of the cake and it ended up in the oven for another half an hour. By then it appeared to be entirely cooked through.

The following day, I tentatively cut through the cake and found that, although it was a very moist cake, it was thankfully cooked through. It had a nice amount of fruit evenly distributed throughout the loaf. The cake was fairly light in colour and texture for a fruited cake but I think the tea gave it more depth. It would be something I would make again. I especially like the fact that it contained no butter or oil. It helped to make up for all the other fat that I consumed during the afternoon tea!

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