A Fruit Tea Cake

I know what you are thinking, another fruit cake!?  Well I promise that this one is very different from the last fruit cake.  This cake is incredibly light, moist and isn’t overly sweet.  I personally enjoy a good fruit cake though I know they are not particularly popular but, for me, fruit cake is the perfect tea time treat on a cold autumnal afternoon.  I have found over the years that fruit cakes tend to taste better on the second and third day of eating – I am not sure exactly why this is but I guess it has something to do with the flavours maturing as the days pass.

Mumsy has been talking about wanting a fruit cake for some time.  I was fully aware that she was after Delia Smith’s recipe for tea cake. However, I was in the mood for experimenting so I decided to do my twist on a tea cake.  I started preparing the cake in the morning by soaking the dried fruit in a bowl of tea so that the fruit would be completely rehydrated and ready for adding to the cake batter.  The resultant cake was not what Delia would consider to be a traditional tea cake, but, Mumsy enjoyed it and that was the most important thing.


Fruit Tea Cake


  • 150g mixed dried fruit
  • 50g currants
  • 50g cherries (cut in half)
  • 1 cup of strong tea (boiling hot)
  • 200g soft margarine
  • 150g brown sugar
  • 125g self-raising flour
  • 100g plain flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1 heaped tsp black treacle


1.  Place the mixed fruit and currants in a bowl with the cup of tea, cover with cling film and allow to soak for 2-4 hours.

2. Once the fruit has had time to soak, cream together the sugar and margarine together in a bowl.

3.  Slowly add the eggs to the mix adding a little flour to prevent the mixture from curdling.

4.  Sift in the flour and beat well.

5.  Strain the fruit, then add to the mixture along with the remaining ingredients.

6.  Pour the batter into a lined square tin 25cm x 25cm.  Bake in a preheated oven at 170C fan for 35-45 minutes (or until a skewer comes cleanly out of the cake).  If you are concerned the cake is browning too quickly turn the oven down slightly or cover the cake with a piece of baking paper.


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