Just noticed I’ve already clocked up 35,000 words in my blog document. How quickly they add up. On Day 1 a few months back, I saved my word doc as ‘Blog Ramblings’. Thank you so much for reading and following my ramblings and recipes. I’m as chuffed as a ‘nearly 5yr old’ getting her 1st prep certificate for student of the week (well done pumpkin!)
But it’s early days yet, at school and My Farm Kitchen. With only 56 recipes baked and one full season past, I’m getting excited about sharing my fondest winter recipes with you. MFK friends in the Northern Hem, please don’t despair. Our mild Queensland Winter is much like your Spring that’s finally sprung. There’ll be plenty of goodies to bake for all seasons.
This cooler weather is perfect for old fashioned heart warming loaves. I’ve tested many sultana (and date) loaf recipes over the years. No doubt you’ve tried lots too. This one's from my Mum’s oldest recipe collection and it's particularly fab. Not sure of its origin but it's certainly a creation from the 50/60’s. I’ve renamed it retro but it belongs in the boiled fruit cake category. And currently fights for top billing with that other quick Low Fat Healthy Loaf shared a few months back.
Ingredients - 4 cups plain flour ❤ 1 teaspoon bi carb (baking) soda ❤ 1 teaspoon mixed spice ❤ 1 teaspoon ground cloves ❤ 2 cups caster sugar ❤ 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened ❤ 2 cups warm water ❤ 500 grams Australian sultanas, rinsed and drained (or a combination of sultanas and chopped dates if you like) ❤ ½ teaspoon sea salt ❤ 1 tablespoon of marmalade or finely chopped citrus peel
Makes 2 medium sized loaves 22cm x 11cm or 1 x larger loaf + 1 x small loaf
Method - Preheat oven to moderate 180°C (350°F). Grease two loaf tins and line with baking paper.
Sift flour, spices, baking soda and salt together twice into a large bowl. Combine sugar, butter, water and sultanas in a medium sized saucepan. Bring to the boil. Turn heat down and simmer gently for 10 minutes. Remove from stove top and allow to cool completely. Add the sultana mixture to flour and fold through with a large metal spoon. Fold in marmalade or chopped peel too. Careful not to over mix at this stage.
Spread into prepared loaf tins and bake for 50 minutes - 1 hour or until centre springs back when lightly touched. Great toasted and spread with butter if desired. Or just enjoy fresh and plain straight from the oven. Keeps well in an airtight container. Just as well it makes 2 loaves, has a shocking habit of just disappearing.