One of those quickly made loaf cakes that is equally delicious plain or spread with butter.
I tend to buy mixed fruit in one kilogram bags and always make two loaves, however, it is easy to halve the ingredients and make one loaf. If possible mince or process the dried fruits in a food processor as this will give the loaf a smoother texture that slices very well, alternatively blitz with a stick blender after the fruit mixture has cooled. I use a commercial blend of mixed dried fruit but any combination of dried fruits can be used.
1 kg dried fruit
1 cup water
250 g butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons marmalade
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs or 5 regular
½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups plain flour
Mince dried fruit in a food processor. This is optional but produces a loaf with an excellent cutting quality.
Combine butter, sugar, dried fruit and water together in a large saucepan. Melt/cook on low heat until butter has melted. Mix well and then remove from heat and allow the mixture to cool.
Stir in marmalade, vanilla, eggs, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder and mix well.
Stir in flour and mix until combined.
Spoon the mixture into two greased and lined large loaf tins.
Bake at 160 deg C until golden brown and tests just clean with a skewer, approximately an hour or longer as required* The loaf is better slightly undercooked than overcooked.
When cool cut into slices/fingers and spread with butter.
*If I think the loaf is nearly cooked I turn the oven off and leave it in the oven to cool. Mostly this works very well, although there has been he odd time when the loaf was not quite cooked