Bara Brith

In honour of St David’s day I decided to make a bara brith for the first time, inspired by having a Welsh best friend and Gingerbread Jenn posting a delightful recipe this week. I found a recipe on BBC good food and made a little tweak or two; I decided to use cardamom tea instead of black tea to add that extra spice (cardamom is such a lovely spice), gluten free flour and glaze it with honey. It was a touch crumblier because of the gluten free flour but it was still ridiculously delicious. I love a fruity tea loaf and this one is divine. Bara brith can be made as a yeasted loaf or with self-raising flour like here. I love that this is proper bowl and spoon recipe, I always like to make traditional recipes without fancy electric whisks because back in the day they didn’t have those things. Bara brith is traditionally served with a nice coating of butter. A quick word of warning, the fruit needs to soak overnight, so get it soaking now ready to make a bara brith on St David’s day morning!


The recipe states 300g of dried fruit, what dried fruit is up to you though. I went for a mix of currants, raisins, sultanas, mixed peel and cherries. My favourite dried fruits are dried cranberries and dates, I’m already plotting a version using those and perhaps a more vegetable based fruity tea loaf batter. Watch this space!



  • 300 g of mixed dried fruit
  • 200 g of light brown sugar
  • The zest of 1 orange
  • 250 ml of hot cardamom/black tea (or any other tea you might fancy experimenting with)
  • 350 g of self-raising flour (I used gluten free, which worked fine but could have used an extra half a tsp of xantham gum)
  • 2 tsp of mixed spice
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 50 g of butter, plus extra to serve (at room temperature)
  • 1 tbsp of honey plus 1.5 tsp of boiling water


  1. Place the mixed dried fruit, sugar, orange zest and hot tea into a medium sized mixing bowl. Stir, cover and leave overnight to soak.
  2. Preheat the oven to 160°C and line a 1kg loaf tin.
  3. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the flour and mixed spice, followed by the egg and butter. You should have a fairly thick batter.
  4. Once well mixed, pour into your lined cake tin and bake in the oven for 1 hr 15 mins. Check if it is cooked by inserting a skewer, it will come out clean once the cake it cooked. If your cake browns too quickly, cover it in foil.
  5. Mix the honey and boiling water together in a small bowl, just prior to removing the cake from the oven (or immediately afterwards).
  6. Remove from the oven and glaze the top of the cake with your honey mixture. Leave the cake in the tin for ten minutes.
  7. Remove the cake from the tin and leave it to cool completely.
  8. Once cooled, slice and serve with (optional) slatherings of butter.

2 thoughts on “Bara Brith

  1. Pingback: The Homemade Christmas Gift Guide | Noisette

  2. Pingback: Boiled Fruit Cake | Noisette

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