Fig, Date and Walnut Loaf

2013 09 30_0911 copy copy

I am always looking through cookbooks with an eye for something to try.  Sometimes the result of my efforts leaves a lot to be desired and sometimes it is a jackpot.  Well, I hit a jackpot the other day with this yummy sweet bread.  It tasted as good as you remember raisin bread tasting when you were a kid.

Maus was munching on her third slice (Maus is not a big eater so that was a big effort) and, in between mouthfuls and telling me it was good, she recalled that her mum used to take her, along with her siblings, to the Sanitarium Health Food shop in Hay Street and, as a special treat, they used to have toasted raisin bread and a malted milk shake.

It is great when you make something that brings back fond memories.  This bread is soft and sweet with just enough interest from the fruit and nuts and, to top it off, it has a lovely sugar and cinnamon topping.   This is definitely a repeater.

This is an Australian Women’s Weekly recipe from The AWW Country Collection. 

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp dried yeast
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 2 tbs* warm water
  • ⅔ cup (160 mils) warm milk
  • 150g plain flour
  • 1 egg, beaten lightly
  • 2 tsp orange rind, finely grated
  • 300g plain flour, extra
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 55g light brown sugar
  • 100g butter, softened
  • 50g dried figs, finely chopped
  • 40g seeded dried dates, finely chopped
  • 35g raisins
  • 25g walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbs* caster sugar, extra
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon, extra.

*These are 20 mil tablespoons.

Method:

  1. Combine yeast, caster sugar, water and milk in large bowl.  Whisk until yeast dissolves then whisk in sifted flour.  Cover, stand in warm place about 30 minutes or until mixture is frothy.
  2. Stir egg, rind, sifted extra flour, cinnamon and brown sugar into yeast mixture.
  3. Stir in butter, fruit and nuts and mix until it comes together.
  4. Knead dough on floured surface until smooth. (About 5 minutes in a mixer and 10 minutes by hand.)
  5. Place dough in large oiled bowl, cover with oiled plastic wrap and stand in warm place about 1½ hours or until dough has doubled in size.
  6. Preheat oven to 200°C.
  7. Grease 14cm x 21cm loaf pan; line base with baking paper.
  8. Stretch out dough into rectangle, fold top third down over centre and bottom third up over the centre.  Fold in left third and then right third, turn dough over and make a boule.
  9. Shape into loaf and place in pan.  Cover loosely with greased plastic wrap.
  10. Stand in a warm place for about 30 minutes or until risen.
  11. Remove plastic wrap.  Brush dough with egg yolk.
  12. Sprinkle evenly with combined extra sugar and cinnamon.
  13. Bake loaf for 10 minutes.  Reduce oven to 180°C and bake further 30 minutes.
  14. Turn onto wire rack to cool.

12 thoughts on “Fig, Date and Walnut Loaf

  1. It’s what I’d call a “tea cake / tea bread” delicious and I haven’t made one in AGES. And I have a packet of dried figs in the fridge that are gradually being used up, I see another few being used this weekend! Thanks

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