The Dense & Rich Date & Fruit Bread Of Your Dreams

recipe

Date and Fruit Bread

The first time I tried this recipe was at a resort called Amilla in the Maldives. It was included in our in-room breakfast. Even though we feasted on eggs, bread, and a sumptuous Arabic breakfast, once we spread butter over this jewelled fruit loaf we finished all three slices. I was so smitten I asked them for the recipe and that day I had it in my hand. Ours looks slightly different than theirs - I baked mine in a long, slender tin but theirs was a free form bread.

Date and Fruit Bread

This bread isn't a yeasted bread, it's more like a banana bread where you spread it with butter or eat it toasted with butter. I kept the fruit whole so that you could see it when you cut a cross section into the loaf. I was worried that the fruit would all sink to the bottom so when I cut it I almost held my breath. Thankfully it was well distributed within the loaf. It was pretty damn beautiful.

Date and Fruit Bread

Speaking of beautiful, we recently went to yum cha with Viggo and Louise. Towards the end of the meal Viggo showed us his new phone and we started playing with Snapchat filters. Louise and I put moustache filters on our faces while Viggo and Mr NQN did the same.

One of the trolley ladies wheeled past and backed up transfixed at the phone screen. She started cackling with sheer joy at the transformations using the filters and told Mr NQN and Viggo that they looked beautiful with the moustaches. So we took her photo with one which delighted her-it was also beautiful she said!

So tell me Dear Reader, do you like fruit bread or fruit cake? And do you ever play on snapchat or Instagram stories? I'm on both so follow me (username: notquitenigella).

Date and Fruit Bread

Dense & Rich Date & Fruit Bread

Adapted from a Recipe from Amilla Resort

Preparation time: 15 minutes plus 10 minutes cooling time

Cooking time: 1 hour 5 minutes

  • 150g/5ozs. dried apricots
  • 150g/5ozs. dried figs
  • 150g/5ozs. pitted dates
  • 150g/5ozs. golden raisins
  • 3 cups apple or orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 cups self raising flour
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 eggs

Date and Fruit Bread

Step 1 - Add dried fruit (leave it whole) and 2 cups of the juice in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Allow to simmer for 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Stir in bicarb of soda and set aside for 10 minutes.

Date and Fruit Bread

After liquid is absorbed

Step 2 - Preheat oven to 180C/350F and line a 7x28cms baking tin or a loaf tin on the base and sides. In a large bowl whisk the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and ginger until there are no lumps. Whisk the eggs and then stir in with the fruit and extra fruit juice. Pour the fruit mixture into the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. If it browns too much after 30 minutes you can cover it with foil.

Date and Fruit Bread

Serve with butter. This is also delicious toasted.

Tip: make two of these at a time - it freezes very well. I make two and then slice it up and butter it and wrap it up for lunches and place it in the freezer. It's also a wonderful gift to give to friends as it is very special.