Brick? Brack! It's all Irish to me: recipe for Irish Bambrick

I was about to post this recipe, then I thought, that's not very travel-oriented. But wait! It's a recipe for Irish Bambrick!

So it's time to break out the Bewley's tea (Van Morrison's fave), whack on the Claddagh CD (or Cranberries, Corrs, Boyzone - oh, Rohan - whatever takes your fancy) and carve up a slice of this solid, wholesome tea-time treat.

Irish Bambrick
1½ cups cold black tea
¼ cups sultanas
1 cup currants
¾ cup mixed peel, finely chopped (I think mixed peel is sooo '50s, I used apricots)
½ cup brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 cups self-raising flour (I used 1 cup wholemeal - I AM my mother!)
½ cup walnuts (almonds or brazil nuts)

The recipe doesn't call for it, but I added a little nutmeg and some cinnamon. In hindsight, I'd drop the cinnamon.

Combine tea, sultanas, currants, mixed peel (apricots) and sugar in a bowl. Cover. Stand the mixture overnight. Stir in egg. Mix in flour and nuts. Spoon into a greased and lined 13x21cm loaf pan. Bake at 160 degrees for 1 - 1 1/4 hours or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Stand for 5 minutes. Turn onto a wire rack to cool. This cake can be frozen for up to three months (though why you wouldn't want to eat it hot from the oven is beyond me).

A note of warning: the uncooked mixture is seriously sticky. I added an extra splash of tea and it didn't hurt. And it really needs the full hour or more in the oven, otherwise you'll end up with a sticky heart.

PS: This recipe was clipped from an Australian nursing newsletter. The spelling of bambrick is weird: I have found reference to 'barmbrack', but just I'd call this a brack - take it from one who has consumed many bracks in her time living in Dublin.

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