Barmbrack is a traditional Irish fruit cake, which I used to get in my school lunchbox around Halloween every year. Traditionally, a ring is baked into the cake, and there would be great excitement every year as to who would get the slice with the ring in it. I always like to think it was Barmbrack that inspired the writers of Father Ted to come up with the episode where Mrs. Doyle bakes a jumper into a cake! This recipe makes a really beautiful, moist loaf, packed with flavour from the mixed spice and dried fruit, which has sat overnight in cold tea and whiskey to soak up all the goodness.
A fun baking idea for St. Patrick's Day
My mom has been making this recipe for as long as I can remember. First, you bake the appley, cinnamony sponge, then you pour the steaming, rich caramel sauce over and allow it to sink in. Heaven with cream or custard. There are 140 varieties of apples that are native to Ireland with wonderful names like 'Cavan Rose' and 'Irish Molly'. Any eating or cooking apple will work, so have fun experimenting with different types, not the same old same old!
This is a wonderfully light, fluffy cake due to the airy whisked egg whites folded in. Subtly scented with spices and lightly fragranced with citrus, this cake is perfect with a cup of tea. Or serve as a dessert with Greek yoghurt and fresh fruit if you want a lighter finish to a meal. I've used vanilla bean paste here which is one of my Pantry Pals (I love the aroma and natural sweetness of real vanilla seeds). The solid ingredients in this cake are measured in millilitres, so use your measuring jug instead of weighing scales.
From: Four Live
A comfort pudd, especially with the Crème Anglaise/Vanilla Custard recipe below.