Tessa's Tea Loaf

Recipe: Tessa’s tea loaf1 minute read

Tessa's Tea Loaf

Tessa is my mother! She adapted an old tea loaf recipe to make it lighter in sugar and richer in protein. Not only is it delicious, but it’s also naturally gluten-free. Sit down with friends and share this over your favourite cup of tea.

Serves 8

110g butter
110g brown sugar
300g dried mixed fruit
230ml water
1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 heaped tsp mixed spice
2 eggs, beaten
110g rice flour
110g gram (chickpea) flour
Pinch of sea salt


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (or 160°C for a fan oven). Line a 7-inch square or loaf tin with greaseproof paper.

2. Place the butter, sugar, fruit, water, bicarbonate of soda and mixed spice in a large saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer for 1 minute.

3. Allow to cool, and then add the eggs, rice flour, gram flour and salt. Mix well.

4. Pour the mixture into the lined tin, and put in the centre of the oven. Bake for 60–75 minutes.

5. Allow to cool before eating!

Tip: this goes especially well with a steaming mug of Earl Grey.

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Dr Thivi Maruthappu


Dr Thivi Maruthappu is the UK’s first and only dual-qualified Consultant Dermatologist and Nutritionist, and the pioneer of the (much-needed!) Nutritional Dermatology field. She runs busy NHS dermatology clinics, conducts academic research and delivers lectures worldwide. She’s also recently authored her first book, Skin Food, which aims to make holistic skincare accessible for everyone.



Porter magazine called her a ‘Global Skincare Expert’, and Caroline Hirons described her as ‘one of the best facialists in the world’. In the skincare industry, Marie Reynolds is in a league of her own. I had the privilege of experiencing one of Marie’s facials as a young journalist—and I can still remember every exquisite detail more than a decade later.

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