Spicy Buttermilk Fruit Loaf

I love spices in cake and this one is full of spices and fruit.  I found this recipe in the “You” Magazine of 8th August 2002 (one of the two magazines I used to buy on a regular basis – but now only occasionally – and always tore out and kept all the recipes from them).  The recipes in both these magazines (You” and “Your Family”) are sent in by readers and they are tested by the magazines.  I have made this one many times over.  It reminds me of a boston loaf which is also made in a jam jar, giving perfectly round slices.  It is delicious served with butter.

500 ml flour

125 ml butter

250 ml sugar

5 ml bicarbonate of soda

10 ml mixed spice

5 ml cinnamon

3 ml nutmeg

125 ml currants

125 ml candied peel, finely chopped (or 125 g chopped dates)

15 ml syrup or honey

300 ml buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 180 C and grease two large jam or fruit tins (10 cm diameter and 11.5 cm high) with butter or nonstick spray.  Line the base of each with baking parchment or greaseproof paper and grease as well.

Sift the flour into a bowl and rub in the butter.

Add the sugar, bicarbonate of soda, spices, currants and candied peel (or dates) and mix well.  I never seem to have peel so I always use dates which are perfect in this cake.  Mix the syrup or honey with the buttermilk and add to the flour mixture, stirring until blended.

Turn the batter into the prepared tins and bake.  The recipe says to bake for an hour and a half but I find an hour is more than sufficient.  As all ovens are different just test it with a skewer and when it comes out clean it is done.

Cool in the tin for 15 minutes before turning out.  Leave to cool completely and serve the slices with butter.


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