Wednesday, 26 December 2012



I recently rediscovered the recipe for this Cranberry-Orange Walnut Tea Bread. I had it scribbled in an old diary. I don't remember where the recipe came from. I do remember, however, the person who gave me the diary. I also remember that I bought the Christmas linen (featured in the photo above) during a day trip to the Blue Mountains, NSW in 1999. Three days ago, I retrieved it from my drawer and put it up on a hanger to air it. Yesterday, it wasn't on the hanger anymore. I searched high and low only to find that I had already returned it to the drawer myself. 

They say that people with dementia can remember things from long ago, but not things from a few minutes ago. So if you ask me what I had for lunch today, my answer is "I can't recall it now but check back with me again in ten years and I'll tell you."

Cranberry-Orange Walnut Tea Bread
Makes one 7" x 7" cake

75 grams butter, softened
150 grams sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
110 grams fresh orange juice
110 grams buttermilk
260 grams all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
65 grams dried fruit (I used a mixture of chopped dried cranberries, glazed cherries, orange peel and raisins)
65 grams chopped walnuts

Preheat your oven at 180 degrees C.  Line a 7" x 7" pan with parchment paper. (In the original recipe, the bread is baked in a 9" x 5" pan.)

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, beat butter until creamy and smooth then add sugar, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Continue to beat until the mixture is very light in colour and texture.

Add the egg very slowly, about 1 tablespoon at a time. Continue beating until mixture is fluffy and pale ivory in colour. Stir in the vanilla extract, orange juice, then buttermilk.  Add flour mixture in 3 - 4 additions until incorporated.  Fold in the dried fruits and walnuts.

Spoon batter into prepared pan, and spread evenly with a rubber spatula.

Bake the cake until the top springs back when pressed lightly and a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out free of batter, 50 - 55 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for 10 – 15 minutes before turning the cake out of the pan.


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