Afternoon Tea Cake

Rachel Allen's recipe mixes fruit with a hint of alcohol - and it's easy to make!


  • 125 g mixture of dried fruit (such as raisins, sultanas, currants, chopped dates and chopped dried apricots)
  • 75 ml cointreau (brandy or whisky)
  • 200 g butter (plus extra for greasing)
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 1 tblsp sunflower oil
  • 3 free range eggs
  • 250 g flour (sifted)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • icing sugar (for dusting)


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4).
  2. Line the base of a 20cm/8in cake] tin with greaseproof paper and rub the sides with butter to grease it.
  3. Place the dried fruit and alcohol in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Let it simmer for a few seconds and then pour into a bowl and allow to cool.
  4. In a large bowl, beat the butter until soft, add the sugar and beat, then add the oil and the eggs one by one, beating all the time (I usually do this in a food mixer, but an electric hand mixer is just as good.
  5. Gently stir in the sifted flour, baking powder, salt, fruit and liqueur.
  6. Transfer the cake batter into the prepared tin, smooth the top and cook in the oven for 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake centre comes out clean.
  7. Cool slightly before removing the cake from the tin and finish cooling on a wire rack. Dredge with icing sugar when cool.


This recipe and many more are available from Rachel's book Rachel's Food for Living published by Harper Collins


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