Anyone for Irish Tea Bread?

The Met Office website had forecast snow blizzards for today in the Trossachs and Argyle region. True to its word we had 8” of snow during the night and the snow continued to fall horizontally for most of the day.

It was, therefore, a prime day to catch up on some domestics and relax after three challenging hill days.

We had by now finished the home-baking that was kindly provided by Cameron’s Mum before we left Fort William so it seemed the ideal day for me to do some baking. It is quite a challenge to cook in the ‘van with such a small work surface, and it certainly requires some creative organisation of ingredients and dishes! A friend, Steph, gave me the following recipe for Irish Tea Bread and it is certainly a favourite to have on the mountains, especially on a cold day. This was one of the cakes I made for the cake sale I held at QinetiQ (my last work place) for the “Pedal for Scotland 2010” charity cycle in aid of Cancer Research and Marie’s Cancer Support Unit. It was a sure-hit with my work colleagues.

Recipe for Irish Tea Bread

'Van-made Irish Tea Bread: delicious!

  • 4 oz margarine
  • 1/2 pint strained tea
  • 3 1/2 oz currants
  • 2 1/2 oz sultanas
  • 2 oz mixed peel
  • 4 oz caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup or honey
  • 9 oz self raising flour
  • 1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp mixed spice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 oz demerara sugar

Grease and line a deep 7″ round baking tin. Put margarine, tea, fruit, peel, caster sugar and syrup in a pan and bring to simmer so that the margarine can melt and sugar dissolve. Let mixture cool. Sift together flour with bicarbonate of soda and spices. Make a well in the middle and pour in the cooled mixture. Stir until well blended. Pour into the prepared baking tin and sprinkle with demerara sugar. Bake in the centre of a preheated oven (350°F / 180°C / gas mark 4) for 1 hour and 20 mins.

Tip: Irish Tea Bread will freeze okay.

About Elaine Speirs

Elaine comes from Hamilton near Glasgow and her interests in the outdoor scene began at University. She is a keen mountaineer, climber, cyclist and skier. Her first mountaineering exploit was going up the North Face of Ben Nevis after which she was “hooked” on the mountains. She has also climbed outside of the UK, particularly in the Dolomites, Chamonix and Majorca.
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4 Responses to Anyone for Irish Tea Bread?

  1. Chris Robinson says:

    Wouldn’t it just be easier for you to make me some and bring it back down? 🙂
    Hope it’s not too cold just now. We’ve had a whole inch of snow here!
    Take care, C.

  2. Giles says:

    Agree with Chris. Perhaps you could send us a some? Seems I’m in a cake-free office these days….

    • Elaine says:

      Cake-free office! This is your chance Giles to rectify this unheard of situation by actually making some of the recipes 🙂 Next on my list is Sticky Lime and Coconut Loaf. The Rock Bun recipe will also soon be on the website!

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