One of the recipes in a cookbook I reviewed recently was for a Welsh tea loaf where the dried fruit is soaked in hot tea. The resulting loaf is delicious, particularly when cut into thick slabs and smeared with butter. I took that concept and replaced the tea with coffee. I like my coffee strong so I used two tablespoons of ground coffee to 1 cup of boiling water.
I made the first version with raisins which was nice but as the Anster favours sultanas over raisins I switched. It helps that sultanas are less expensive than raisins. I’m fairly sure I have mentioned before that the Anster is one of those weird people who doesn’t like coffee. I can taste the coffee in this loaf but that may be because I know it is there. The Anster loves this loaf – it is his sort of food. I expressed a little surprise and asked him if he could taste the coffee and he said now that you mention it he could detect the coffee but it was subtle enough for his taste buds.
The idea of soaking the fruit in coffee or tea can be taken even further and I’m thinking whiskey soaked raisins, Cointreau soaked apricots, grappa soaked golden raisins…… I can feel a lot of loaves coming through the kitchen.
Note that this recipe is dairy-free providing dairy-free chocolate chips are used. I have adapted the Bara Brith Loaf from Pipi At Home by Alexandra Tylee by replacing the tea with coffee, adding some cocoa powder to the dry ingredients. replacing the currants with sultanas (or raisins). I have also used flour and baking powder instead of self-raising flour, omitting the spice and I added the sprinkling of chocolate chips to the top of the loaf. I had hoped that my dairy-challenged daughter would love this loaf but she has turned her pretty little nose up at the dried fruit.