Apple cider fruit loaf

cider-fruit-loaf

This fruit loaf is made with apple cider, spices and dried fruits. It is perfect with marmalade – actually I had it with my Aunty’s cumquat marmalade and it was delicious. I think this could be nice with half a cup of dried apple added. I’ll try that next time I make it. I used the new James Squire Orchard Crush Apple Cider – which incidentally is a nice drop on it’s own.

I go through periods of having fruit loaf for breakfast, but I wonder how much sugar the store bought ones contain. This one doesn’t have any. Alas I have fallen off my sugar-free challenge. I have made leaps and bounds in reducing my sugar intake, but I’m still having some!

Isn’t it strange most bakeries don’t sell fruit loaf?

Apple cider fruit loaf recipe

1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup sultanas
335ml bottle of dry apple cider
3 1/2 cups of bread flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground mixed spice
1/2 tsp ground allspice
3/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cloves
7g dried yeast

  1. Soak the dried fruit in the apple cider while you measure out the other ingredients.
  2. Add the flour, spices and yeast to a bowl and make a well in the centre.
  3. Strain the cider from the fruit, reserving the fruit. Add the liquid to the dry mixture.
  4. Knead well for 15 to 20 minutes until the dough is stretchy. Cover and leave in a warm place until doubled in size – about 45 to 60 minutes.
  5. Knock back the dough and add the fruit. Knead until the fruit is evenly distributed.
  6. Shape into an oval loaf and place of a baking tray lined with baking paper. Cover with a tea towel and prove a second time for 30 minutes or until doubled.
  7. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 220 degrees C.
  8. Dust the loaf with flour and score it with a knife. Bake for 35 minutes or until the loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Cool on a wire rack.

Review: Smooze

smooze

This weather is perfect for eating treats from the freezer. At the Mitchie markets the ice blocks were sold out by the time we got there. Fortunately, I had a few Smooze fruit ices back at home.

The good news is these little gems contain 100% natural ingredients and are dairy and gluten free. They are the ideal size for an in-between meals snack.

Smooze fruit ices are available in four tropical flavours: Coconut and pink guava, Coconut and pineapple, Coconut and mango, and Simply coconut.

The mango one is currently my favourite flavour. The coconut one would be perfect to add to smoothies or fruit juices. I’m planning on trying the mango one blended with some fresh orange juice.

You can pick up a box of 10 from the dessert aisle and keep them in the freezer over Summer.

Produce in season for December in Australia

sprekelia-jan

Vegetables in season for December in Australia

asparagus, avocado, basil, beans, capsicum, celery, choko, cucumber, celery, choko, cucumber, eggplant, lettuce, onions, peas, spring onions, squash, sweetcorn, tomato, zucchini

Fruit in season for December in Australia

apricot, banana, black currants, cherries, honey due melon, lychee, mango, orange, passionfruit, pineapple, plum, red currants, rockmelon, watermelon

Photo by Jan

Produce in season for November in Australia

rose-baby-baccarat-jan

Vegetables in season for November in Australia

artichoke (globe), asparagus, avocado, basil, beans, choko, cucumber, lettuce, onion, peas, spinach, sweetcorn, spring onion, tomato, zucchini

Fruit in season for November in Australia

banana, cherries, cumquat, grapefruit, honeydue melon, lemon, loquat, mangoes, orange, paw paw, pineapple, rockmelon, watermelon

Photo by Jan

Produce in season for October in Australia

orchid-jan

Vegetables in season for October in Australia

artichoke (globe), asparagus, avocadoes, basil, beans, broccoli, chinese greens, choko, cucumber, garlic, lettuce, mushrooms, onions, peas, silverbeet, spinach, spring onions

Fruit in season for October in Australia

cumquat, grapefruit, lemon, loquat, mango, orange, paw paw, pineapple, strawberries, tangelo

Photo by Jan

Produce in season for September in Australia

louisiana-iris-jan

Vegetables in season for September in Australia

artichoke (globe), asparagus, avocadoes, basil, beans, broccoli, carrot, cauliflower, chinese greens, garlic, ginger, lettuce, mushrooms, onions, parsnip, peas, potato, pumpkin, silverbeet, spinach, spring onions

Fruit in season for September in Australia

apple, cumquat, grapefruit, lemon, mandarin, melon, oranges, paw paw, pineapple, tangelo

Photo by Jan

Produce in season for August in Australia

iris-pink-jan

Vegetables in season for August in Australia

artichoke (jerusalem), avocadoes, beetroot, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, celeriac, celery, chinese greens, fennel, garlic, ginger, kohlrabi, leek, onion, parsnip, potato, pumpkin, shallots, silverbeet, spinach, swede, sweet potato, turnip

Fruit in season for August in Australia

apples, custard apple, grapefruit, lemon, lime, mandarin, melon, oranges, paw paw, pineapple, rhubarb, tangelo

Photo by Jan

Produce in season for July in Australia

grape-hyacinths-jan

Vegetables in season for July in Australia

artichoke (jerusalem), avocadoes, beetroot, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, celeriac, celery, chinese greens, fennel, garlic, ginger, kohlrabi, leek, mushrooms, onions, parsnip, potato, pumpkin, shallots, silverbeet, spinach, swede, sweet potato, turnip

Fruit in season for July in Australia

apples, custard apple, grapefruit, kiwi fruit, lemon, lime, mandarin, melon, nashi, orange, paw paw, pineapple, rhubarb

Photo by Jan

Produce in season for June in Australia

freesias-jan

Vegetables in season for June in Australia

artichoke (jerusalem), avocadoes, beetroot, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, celeriac, celery, chinese greens, fennel, garlic, ginger, kohlrabi, leek, mushrooms, onion, parnsip, potato, pumpkin, shallots, silverbeet, spinach, swede, sweet potato, turnip

Fruit in season for June in Australia

apples, custard apple, grapefruit, kiwifruit, lemon, lime, mandarin, melon, nashi, nuts, orange, passionfruit, pears, rhubarb.

Photo by Jan

List of the best storing and preserving methods for fruit and vegetables

silverbeet-parents

Different produce responds to different treatments – and some things just need to be eaten.

The list below gives a summary of which fruit and vegetables store and preserve well. It may also help in planing your edible gardening year.

Stores well:

  • apples, pears (not early variety)
  • beetroot, cabbage, carrot, garlic, kohlrabi, onion, parsnip, potato, pumpkin, swede, turnip

Good for bottling:

  • all fruits
  • tomato

Makes delightful things:

  • all fruits
  • aubergine, cabbage, cauliflower, courgette, cucumber, onion, tomato

Can be dried:

  • apples, damsons, plums
  • beans, peas, tomato

Freezes well:

  • berry fruits, apples and pears (if pureed)
  • broad beans, broccoli, calabrese, French beans, peas, runner beans

Lasts well on the plant or in the ground:

  • rhubarb
  • artichoke (Jerusalem), beetroot, broccoli (sprouting), Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, celeraic, celery, chard, chicory, kale, leeks, lettuce and salads, parsnip, swede, turnip

Eat when ready: few or no good storage preservation options

  • artichoke (globe), asparagus, cardoon, radish, sweetcorn

21st-Century Smallholder – by Paul Waddington