Moroccan fruit loaf

Moroccan fruit loaf, Kitchen to Table, Yamba

This Moroccan-spiced, fruit-laden tea loaf is easy to make and absolutely delicious. I came upon this recipe after a recommendation by a lovely customer as I was intrigued by the use of the Moroccan spice ‘ras-el-hanout’ in a sweet application. Ras-el-hanout is a Moroccan spice blend that literally translates as ‘top of the shop’ … each spice merchant will have a signature blend of up to 25 spices. I must say it works beautifully in this sweet loaf laden with dried fruit. With each bite, you might get a hint of saffron or a hint of cumin or a hint of one of the 23 spices contained in this spice blend by Herbies Spices.

The recipe is very simple, essentially it is a one-bowl easy mix batter, the most time-consuming part of the preparation is preparing the fruit and soaking it overnight. Once the fruit is soaked add some dry ingredients and it’s good to go into the oven where it transforms into a moist, spicy loaf!

Serve this fruit loaf lightly buttered with a cup of Moroccan mint tea and you’ll be transported to a land afar …

75g currants
75g raisins
75g dried figs, diced
75g dried apricots, sliced
75g dates, sliced
2 tsp Herbies ras-el-hanout
1 orange, zest and juice
250ml strong earl grey tea
1 egg
225g self-raising flour
pinch salt

Method:

  1. Combine the currants, raisins, figs, apricots, dates orange zest and juice in a bowl, sprinkle over the ras-el-hanout, then pour over the hot tea and give everything a stir. Cover and set aside for 8-12 hours to allow the fruits to soak up the tea.
  2. Next day, preheat the oven to 180C fan-forced and line a loaf pan (28cm x 13cm).
  3. Add the egg to the fruit mixture and stir to combine, then add the sifted flour and salt and mix until just combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top.
  4. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until firm to the touch and a cake tester comes out clean. Allow the loaf to cool in its pan for 5 minutes before removing and allowing to cool on a cake rack.
  5. Serve warm or lightly toasted with butter.

Note: Recipe slightly adapted from one by Helen Goh as found on goodfood.com.au

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