Mum’s Spiced Fruit Loaf


This is a fabulous recipe and a firm family favourite. It’s also very versatile and can be used to make child sized cakes (in silicon cupcake cases) or miniature christmas cakes (in muffin trays). It also freezes well.

Ingredients

Group 1

  • 1/2c sugar
  • 50g butter or 60ml rice bran oil
  • 1c sultanas
  • 1c chopped dates
  • 1T golden syrup or maple syrup
  • 1 1/4c water

Group 2

  • 1 1/2 tsp  ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2c chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Group 3

  • 2c flour (or gluten free baking mix)
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder

Allergies: dairy free, soy free, egg free, gluten free*, nut free*.

Directions

  1. Place Group 1 in pot. Boil; then simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  2. Stir in Group 2.
  3. Ideally allow to cool to room temperature (this takes several hours) as this allows the dried fruit time to soak.
  4. Grease and line loaf tin. Preheat oven to 180’C.
  5. Stir in Group 3.
  6. Bake for 1 hour or until skewer comes out smooth.
  7. Cool in tin for 15 minutes before turning out onto wire rack.

Notes

I use a greased silicon loaf tin and often cook a smaller portion in silicon cupcake cases at the same time (for my toddler); the cupcake-sized cakes only take about 15 mins to cook.

This is a versatile recipe. Sometimes I have my toddler help me assemble all of Group 1 and 2 in the pot before I put it on to heat; sometimes I only give the fruit mix 5-10 mins to cool before adding the dry ingredients and cooking it. Sometimes I’ll do the fruit mix after my toddler’s midday nap, let it cool all afternoon, and then put it in to cook after dinner (when the oven is already warm); I’ve also allowed the fruit to soak all night and then cooked it in the morning.

I’ve made this a number of times and varied ingredients (while essentially keeping to the base recipe); i.e. using 1/2c sultanas and 1/2c cranberries; having no walnuts; using coconut thread instead of walnuts; using 1c mixed nuts (smashed) + coconut + melted chocolate + extra water (this is the one pictured).

Walnuts are a soft nut that are easy to smash and chew. I’ve made this using a nut mix (predominantly walnuts & almonds with some hazelnuts and brazil nuts) because it was on special – the other nuts just take a bit more effort to smash. If you have a young baby or toddler then you may want to leave the nuts out until they’ve grown all their molars and are comfortable chewing nuts.  I’ve found the ideal way for us to smash nuts is to put them in a plastic bag and have my toddler enthusiastically whack them with her toy hammer!

Allergies: Soy free, peanut free, egg free, dairy free (replace butter with oil).

 

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