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Mary Berry Bara Brith recipe

Background: The Bara Brith, translating to “speckled bread” in Welsh, is a cherished traditional teacake. Variations of this baked delight can be found sprinkled across Great Britain, including the Barm Brack in Ireland and the Selkirk Bannock in Scotland.

Baking Time: 90 minutes

Servings: 8-10 slices


  • 175g Currants
  • 175g Sultanas
  • 225g light muscovado sugar (please note the corrected amount)
  • 300ml strong hot tea
  • 275g Self Raising Flour
  • 1 large egg, beaten


  1. Prepare the Fruit Mixture: Brew a pot of robust tea. Add the dried fruits and sugar to the tea, ensuring they’re fully submerged. Cover and set aside, letting it steep overnight.
  2. Preheat the Oven: The next day, start by preheating your oven to 150°C (302°F).
  3. Tin Preparation: Lightly grease your baking tin, and then line it with parchment paper for easier removal later.
  4. Combine Ingredients: To the steeped fruit mixture, add in the flour and beaten egg. Stir thoroughly until all ingredients are evenly combined.
  5. Pour and Prep for Baking: Pour the batter into the prepared baking tin, ensuring to level the surface for even baking.
  6. Baking: Place the tin in the oven and bake for 1½ to 1 ⅓ hours. The Bara Brith should rise well and feel firm to the touch. As a test, inserting a skewer into the cake should result in it coming out clean, without any wet batter attached.
  7. Cooling: Post baking, allow the bread to cool in the tin for about 10 minutes. After this initial cooling, peel off the parchment paper and let the bread cool completely on a wire rack.
  8. Serve: For the authentic taste, slice the Bara Brith and serve with a slather of butter.

Pro Tip: The rich flavors of the Bara Brith deepen over time. While it’s tempting to eat it immediately, waiting for a day or two results in a richer and moister teacake.

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