A Deliciously Moist, Fruit Loaf Recipe
The fruit is soaked overnight in Yorkshire tea. Often served on its own or with Wensleydale cheese. A perfect addition as part of an Afternoon Tea menu. It may be a Yorkshire thing, which is where I live in the UK, but cheese goes really well with rich fruit cake or tea loaf.
Many people have said to me that this is the best tea loaf recipe. I've made dozens of them over the years. It retains moisture when wrapped well.
How to make a Yorkshire Tea Loaf. Step by step
To make a moist fruit tea loaf. First place the mixed dried fruit into a heat proof bowl and pour over the freshly brewed Yorkshire Tea. I always use Yorkshire Tea. But you can use any kind of breakfast tea.
In case you are wondering, this is a fat free tea loaf as it doesn't contain any butter or other fats
Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and leave for a minimum of 4 hours. Preferable overnight. This is to allow the fruits to plump up by soaking up as much of the tea as possible.
In the morning, preheat the oven to 160 C fan-assisted and grease and line two 1lb loaf tins with baking parchment. I often need to make a fold in the centre to make sure the cake liners fit my tins correctly.
Add the eggs into the soaked mixed fruit, followed by the sugar. DO NOT drain off any of the remaining tea liquid. Mix thoroughly.
Add the finely ground tea leaves to the flour and incorporate before adding this into the fruit mixture.
Mix thoroughly. Pour evenly into the prepared 1lb loaf tins.
Bake for 45 – 55 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre of each cake comes out clean.
Leave in the tins to cool completely. Serve sliced with butter and a pot of Yorkshire Tea.
Empty the Tea or Not?
There's no need to empty any remaining tea after soaking the dried fruit. The longer you leave it, the more liquid and tea flavour the fruits soak up.
That's why it's best to pour the freshly brewed, slightly cooled, tea over the fruit straight away.
Just make sure that you leave the fruit to soak for a minimum of 4 hours. Preferably overnight.
A Proper Brew.
The strength of the tea depends on how long you leave the tea to brew before pouring over the dried fruit. 4 mins would be a good time.
If you're using loose leave tea, don't forget to strain before pouring over the dried fruits. You will of course have additional tea flavour with the finely ground tea leaves.
If you're replacing this with complementary spices, it's even more imported to obtain a proper brew first.
This recipe uses 2 x 1lb Loaf tins. You'll have time to plan ahead as the fruit will require several hours of soaking in the tea.
Use complementary spices and alternative tea flavours
Replace the finely ground tea with complementary spices such as mixed spices (pumpkin pie mixture or similar) or cinnamon in equal measure.You could also use fruit flavoured teas such as Tisanes from the famous Bettys and Taylors Teas in Harrogate.
How long will a Fruit Tea Loaf Keep?
This easy moist fruit tea loaf or tea bread as it's sometimes called, will keep for up to a couple of weeks if wrapped in baking parchment and kept in an airtight container.
Don't Like Tea but Love Coffee?
More Traditional Yorkshire Recipes
This Treacle and Glacé Ginger Parkin is another favourite with deep flavours of dark treacle.
Yorkshire Curd Tart made with Cottage Cheese is a dream to make. It uses Cottage Cheese as an alternative to fresh Curd that is normally found in a curd tart.
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Yorkshire Tea Loaf
- 1lb Loaf Tin
- 1lb Cake Liner or Baking Parchment
- Cake Skewer
Ingredients - Imperial /oz are approx weights which are calculated by a 3rd party app
- 350 ml Freshly Made Black Tea strained
- 350 g Mixed Dried Fruit
- 2 Medium Eggs
- 200 g Light Brown Sugar or a mix of Light and Dark Brown Sugar
- 1 tsp Tea Leaves Finely Ground
- 270 g Self-Raising Flour
Soaking the fruit
- In a large bowl, add the freshly made tea to the mixed dried fruit. Cover and set aside for a minimum of 4 hours, ideally overnight, to allow all the goodness of the tea to soak into the fruits.
Make the Cake
- In the morning, preheat the oven to 160 C fan-assisted and grease and line two 1-pound loaf tins with baking parchment. I use cake liners.
- Add the eggs into the soaked mixed fruit, followed by the sugar. DO NOT remove any of the remaining liquid. Mix thoroughly.
- Add the finely ground tea leaves to the flour and incorporate before adding this into the fruit mixture. Mix thoroughly.
- Pour evenly into the prepared tins and bake for 50 – 55 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Remove from oven.
- Leave in the tins to cool completely before turning out.
- Replace the finely ground tea with complementary spices such as mixed spices (pumpkin pie mixture or similar) or cinnamon in equal measure.
- Ring the changes by using different flavoured teas such as Tisanes.