I meant to post this recipe some time ago, when I made it for my friend as a thank you for looking after The Boss while we were on holiday ... but kept forgetting, so here it is today.
A recipe for the busy/crafty person who hasn't got time to be messing about in the kitchen ... well there's crafting to be done ... but would like everyone to think they are a domestic goddess, or god, whatever the case may be : )
This delicious fruit loaf is so easy to make because all you have to do is chuck most of the ingredients in a bowl, leave overnight, giving the fruit time to plump up and the other ingredients time to mingle and meld and do their magic. The real problem is remembering to throw everything into the bowl the night before you want to bake the cake. Here's the recipe:
Bran & Fruit Tea Loaf
· 2 mugs of bran breakfast cereal – I used All-Bran but you can substitute with any make, even supermarkets own brand does nicely.
· 2 mugs of dried fruit – either the ready mixed fruit containing candied peel or, if like me you have friend who can’t stand the candied stuff, substitute with your own mix. I used sultanas and chopped dried apricots for the one in the photo.
· 1 ½ mugs of soft brown sugar – gives a nice caramel flavour. Once again, I substituted three-quarters of the sugar for low-sugar granules and it worked perfectly.
· 2 mugs of milk
· 1 large tbsp malt extract – this is not essential but gives a nice flavour. You could use Ovaltine granules instead and it tastes just as good.
The night before: put all the above ingredients into a bowl to soak overnight.
· Set oven to moderate temperature at Mark 3/4 on my mother’s old oven – that is 160̇̇°C /170°C on my more up-to-date, but temperamental, fan-assisted oven.· Grease and line either 2 small loaf tins (about 1lb size) or 1 large tin (about 2lb size)
· Then add 2 mugs self-raising flour to the mix and stir well, really well - I speak from experience! - and pour into tin(s)
· Bake for about 1 ½ - 1 ¾ hours, depending on size of tin - this could be less in one of the newer ovens ... I’m still getting to grips with how much having a wee fan in an oven can speed up the whole process.
When done, cool and served sliced with, I quote, a scraping of butter – clearly, my mother lived through frugal times!