Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween Barmbrack

Posted by Quinn at Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween to my ghoulish guests!!!

For this grand day itself, I've made Barmbrack or somehow more commonly misspelled as Barnbrack. This Irish, tea infused mixed fruit bread (usually yeasted but not in the recipe I'm about to give you!) are usually served toasted and spread with a good layer of butter. They are served during tea time and with tea of course, though coffee would do too!

Barmbrack taste very much like Christmas Pudding or Christmas Fruitcake to me. I first tasted Barmbrack, 3 years ago in a friend's place. She invited me over for a Halloween party and they had Barmbrack on the table. The cool thing and fun part about eating Brambrack is that it contains various objects baked along the bread and it was pretty fun digging into your slice of thick sliced Barmbrack and see what you'll find in it.

This is what Wikipedia says:

In the barnbrack were: a pea, a stick, a piece of cloth, a small coin (originally a silver sixpence) and a ring. Each item, when received in the slice, was supposed to carry a meaning to the person concerned: the pea, the person would not marry that year; the stick, "to beat one's wife with", would have an unhappy marriage or continually be in disputes; the cloth or rag, would have bad luck or be poor; the coin, would enjoy good fortune or be rich; and the ring, would be wed within the year.

I have not seen any commercialized Barmbrack as of now in Australia since Halloween is not a big thing here either but is definitely gaining more attention now compared to years back.
My Irish friend, they have this sorta Brambrack thing during Christmas too! In the Christmas Pudding, they added in lots of old pennies and coins. No stick because it once jolted grandpa's tooth away! But things like pea and just lots and lots of pennies, I don't know why really. But I had fun digging through both her family's Brambrack and Christmas Pudding!

Barmbrack (Irish Mixed Fruits Tea Bread)
makes one small loaf approximately 6'' x 3'' x 1.5''
200g mixed fruits
5 tbsp hot black tea
3 tbsp dark muscovado sugar
Mix the above together and let it soak overnight. (I soaked it for days until I have the time to assemble them together)
1 egg, lightly beaten
125g self-raising flour, sifted
60g melted butter
30g toasted almond, coarsely chopped
Combine the above together with the soaked mixed fruit mixture. Pour it into a grased loaf tin. I use those disposable loaf tin and grease them generously with butter. Bake it in a preheated oven for 160°C for about 45 mins or until it is cooked and golden brown. Remove and leave to cool before serving it in thick slices, toasted and spreaded with butter. For me, I serve it plain usually on the first day but when it turned stale, I'll then toast it and slap butter over it. Your choice, either way, they're delicious!

I hope you will like this recipe and enjoy it as much as I did. Happy Halloween and spook and creep yourself out by watching Paranormal Activities along with lots of Halloween food!

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3 comments on "Halloween Barmbrack"

Christine on November 3, 2009 at 7:39 PM said...

Yumm...I love tea time with any cakes. This Barnbrack looks tempting with lots of mixed fruits, wonderful!

Quinn on November 3, 2009 at 9:46 PM said...

Thanks Christine and thanks for visiting too! I heart you blog!

Anonymous said...

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