By Karen Swindall
This delicious Fruit Tea Loaf is a perfect afternoon treat. Not only is this recipe free from added fat and sugar, but it's also dairy free and can easily be made gluten free, too!
1 teabag (can be flavoured - I like blackberry & blueberry tea infusion)
400ml boiling water
125g ready to eat prunes, quartered
125g ready to eat dates, quartered
100g cherries (frozen or glazed)
100g lemon peel
100g ready to eat apricots, quartered
25g chopped up ginger (Optional)
3tsp ground mixed spice
1 ripe banana
4 large eggs
300g self-raising flour (can use gluten free)
½ tsp baking powder
2 tbsp lemon juice
4tbsp soya milk (can use other plant-based milks)
Don't like some of these fruits? Substitute them for whichever fruits you love!
1. Put the teabag in a jug and pour in 400ml of boiling water, steep for about 5 minutes.
2. In a saucepan, add the prunes, dates, cherries, lemon peel, apricots, sultanas, ginger, mixed spice, lemon juice and pour in the tea.
3. Put the pan on a low heat and simmer, mixing everything together. Cook gently for about 5 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed.
4. Leave to cool for about 30-40 minutes. Preheat the oven at 170C/Fan 150C/Gas 3 ½. Line a square cake tin 21cm by 21cm (8in by 8in) with baking parchment.
5. Peel the banana and cut into pieces. Add into food mixer/processer, along with the eggs and milk, and blend together to make a puree.
6. Add in the flour and baking powder and blend until smooth. Put into a large mixing bowl and then slowly add in the cooled fruit and stir until it is all combined.
7. Put in the oven and bake in the centre for between 30-40 minutes until the cake is pale golden brown and a skewer comes away clean. Take out of the oven and cool and then slice into portions. Serve on its own or with a dollop of double cream.
You can freeze it in portions or wrap well and store in the fridge for a week.