Recipe For Bara Brith – Welsh Tea Cake

When watching The Great British menu a few years ago Bryn Williams made Bara Brith for his dessert. This traditional Welsh cake was the first thing that I ordered when we had morning coffee in Little Haven in Pembrokeshire, Wales. It is a spiced fruit cake and really tasty. As soon as we were home I looked through all of my recipe books to find a recipe for Bara Brith. I prefer to use my recipe books as I have paid for them and need to get some use from the recipe book, other than getting the writer to sign them for me. I turned to Brian Turner’s Favourite British Recipes and followed his recipe for Bara Brith (page 175) to the tee, using up the last of my fresh yeast. The first stage worked quite well, given the fact that I had to use my heater to prove the dough as it was a really cold day, but the second stage proved to be a total disaster. A dough did not form with the addition of the liquid ingredients, and instead I had a nice batter. Rather than shaping this into a round tin as per the method listed, I poured the batter into a loaf tin and proceeded to bake it for the required time. This resulted in a not completely cooked spiced loaf, which I cut up and dried into rusks. I then turned to the internet and found this recipe. It worked perfectly, and the Bara Brith lasted a week. We toasted some and had it with jam which was perfect for an afternoon tea time treat.

Do you order traditional cakes when you are travelling?

Bara Brith
Bara Brith

Bara Brith
 
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Ingredients
  • 1 black tea tea bag - I used vanilla tea
  • 225mls boiling water
  • 300g raisins
  • 150g currants
  • 75mls whisky
  • 450g self raising flour
  • 5mls mixed spice
  • 175g Muscavado sugar - I used fructose
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 30mls orange juice
  • 15g honey, plus extra for glazing
Method
  1. Place your tea bag into a cup and cover with boiling water
  2. Leave to steep for 5 minutes and then remove the tea bag
  3. Place into the fridge until cold
  4. Put the raisins and currants into a mixing bowl
  5. Pour over the tea and the whisky
  6. Cover with cling film and leave to soak overnight
  7. Preheat the oven to 160° Celsius
  8. Sift the flour and spice into the mixing bowl with the fruit and mix in
  9. Place the sugar, egg, orange zest and juice and the honey into a mixing bowl
  10. Whisk together and then add to the fruit, mixing to incorporate all of the ingredients
  11. Pour the mixture into a buttered loaf tin
  12. Bake for 1 hour and 45 minutes
  13. Baste the top generously with honey while still warm
  14. Allow to cool thoroughly before slicing

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34 thoughts on “Recipe For Bara Brith – Welsh Tea Cake

  1. I agree re: cookbooks. It’s just too easy to turn to the internet and leave the books languishing on the shelves. Today I’nm having a go at marmalade from an old book that doesn’t even have pictures…. I have faith but time will tell!

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    1. I am so looking forward to that recipe Fiona!

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  2. This cake with a little coffee looks like the perfect way to start my day. I don’t order traditional cakes when traveling because I never see such items on the menu, or at least where I travel! Looks delightful though..
    Laura @ Raise Your Garden sharing the blog ♥ Build A Cheap Raised Bed From PalletsMy Profile

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    1. This is one worth baking at home Laura 🙂

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  3. Never soak dry fruits ontea instead of rhum before,
    this englich bara brith is must try recipe!!!

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    1. Hope you enjoy it Dedy 🙂

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  4. We allway order local traditional fare when ever we travel, and this Bara Brith sounds utterly delicious Tendy! You are brilliant for changing the recipe and baking that lovely loaf 🙂
    J+C

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    1. Thank you so much J&C 🙂

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  5. I’m so excited about this cake because I’ve never heard of it before so I love reading about new cakes and food. Thanks Tandy! 😀
    Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella sharing the blog ♥ A Hawaiian Carrot Cake (gluten free) & How To Make Pineapple Flowers!My Profile

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    1. This is one I could make over and over again 🙂

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  6. So pleased that others watch The Great British Menu – and this loaf looks great.
    Rachel (Rachel’s Kitchen NZ) sharing the blog ♥ Lemon Roast Chicken & VegetablesMy Profile

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    1. I love the show as it usually features some chefs I think are fantastic 🙂

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  7. Beautiful – this bring back happy childhood memories as one of my grandfathers was Welsh and one of my great aunts always used to make this. She used to cut it really thin and spread butter thickly on it! Happy days 🙂 You made a great job of yours and well done for persevering.

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    1. I love the idea of butter with the bara brith instead of some butter on a thick slice 🙂

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  8. Hi Tandy, this sounds so interesting, so clever of you to change gears and make the most out of the batter. Looks delicious!
    cheri sharing the blog ♥ Spiced Salmon KebabsMy Profile

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    1. Thank you Cheri 🙂

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  9. I love cake or bread recipes with raisins and tea and spice… this looks and sounds divine!

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    1. It is awesome and I wonder if you could make GF option?

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  10. Oh you’ve made me crave fruit bread now. Perfect for this weather with a cup of tea. xx

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    1. I could have used a slice yesterday 🙂

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  11. This Welsh cake looks lovely!
    Glad it worked out second recipe around 😀

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru
    Choc Chip Uru sharing the blog ♥ An Ideal MorningMy Profile

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    1. Thanks Uru 🙂

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  12. I’ve never heard of this but it sounds like a great breakfast loaf!

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    1. Perfect for breakfast Joanne 🙂

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  13. Lovely! I will definitely be making this.
    Have a super day Tandy.
    🙂 Mandy xo

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    1. Let me know what you think when you make it Mandy xox

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  14. Tandy, a slice of your Bara Brith would be perfect with my morning tea. I do try to eat traditional cakes when traveling…Germany and Austria both have some nice ones.

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    1. I shall have to read up more on the traditional cakes of Austria and Germany as my grandparents are from there 🙂

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  15. Such an interesting cake, Tandy! Sounds delicious.

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    1. Thank you Lizzy 🙂

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  16. Yummy. Did you use the same weight of fructose as shown in your recipe?

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    1. I did use the same weight Misky 🙂

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  17. It does look delicious. I always order traditional sweets when traveling. Sometimes I am a bit surprised, but it’s always worth it 🙂

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    1. I agree, it is always worth it 🙂

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