The Great British Bake Off is over (weep) and the masterclasses are done, but those blogalicious bakers, Jenny Berry and Helen Holywood, have extended the Great Bloggers Bake Off until the end of the month so we can try out more bakes from the series. I was sent some Stork and Steenberg’s mixed spice so I thought I would try my hand at making a tea loaf.
I’m not sure what makes a tea loaf different to a tea cake, but I found this recipe for Apple and Spice Tea Loaf on BBC GoodFood and thought it looked really scrumptious. Perfect for showing off the warm spices of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger in the spice mix. I have a feeling it’s not technically a tea loaf, but that didn’t affect the taste one bit.
As always, I did tinker a bit with the original recipe, so I give you my Spiced Apple Tea Loaf.
175g butter (I used Stork), plus extra for greasing
175g light muscovado sugar, plus 1 tsp
3 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
85g ground almonds
1 tsp baking powder
175g plain flour
2 tsp mixed spice
splash apple juice
1 tbsp grapefruit marmalade
Preheat oven to 180C and grease and line a loaf tin.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and the sugar then add the eggs and a teaspoon of the flour to stop it splitting before mixing thoroughly. I used a wooden spoon but you could use electric beaters if you prefer. I just like to cut down on washing up because I’m lazy.
Cut the apple in two and grate half of it, finely slice the other half and sprinkle the slices with apple juice. Add the grated apple, vanilla extract, raisins, ground almonds, baking powder, plain flour and mixed spice to the bowl and mix just until everything is combined. Don’t overmix or the loaf will be tough.
Pour the mixture into the loaf tin and arrange the slice of apple along the top of the loaf, sprinkling with the remaining sugar just before you pop it in the oven. Bake for 45 mins then place foil over the top of the loaf, turn the oven down to 140C and bake for a further 30 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
While it cools, melt the marmalade in the microwave for 30 seconds, or on the stovetop. Brush the top of the cake with the marmalade then when the cake is cool to touch remove it from the tin to cool completely before slicing and devouring.
Goes exceptionally well with a big cup of tea on a rainy Autumn afternoon.