What makes a good tea loaf cake (as opposed to a coffee cake… BIG difference!)?

Many types of tea loaf cake recipes contain a large amount of dried fruit, pre-soaked in some sort of liquid. It could be hot water, tea or alcohol such as brandy, whisky or rum. Slices of tea cake can often be spread with butter or margarine and sometimes jam or jelly. A light scraping in my case, lashed on thick for Justin. Lastly, of course, a tea cake needs to taste great alongside a cup of tea!

These are our 9 favourite tea loaf cake recipes to be devoured as an afternoon snack with a brew.

Marzipan is one of my favourite flavours and this is it in cake form. This is a moist, morish tea cake with a final flourish from a drizzle of melted dark chocolate.

The national tea loaf cake of Wales! Every family would have their own version of the recipe containing differing amounts and combinations of dried fruit and spices. Topped with a honey glaze for extra sweetness!

This cake fills the house with the most amazing aroma while it’s cooking. If you’re not a tea-drinker (those people do exist) this cake also suits a cold glass of milk. It’s also one that suits a topping of fruit jam or jelly.

Forget all bran, a few soaked prunes – especially Agen prunes – are a good way to keep yourself ‘regular’. Soak those prunes in Armagnac and bake them in a cake… even better!

Another of those traditional tea loaf cake recipes. The usual brand commonly available in the supermarket, in my opinion, needs to be slathered in butter to make it moist enough to be edible. This version, from a Paul Hollywood recipe, is something else entirely. When making this one, I always bake double batches as I get so many requests for this one from friends.

We may not live in Yorkshire any longer, but this is still a firm favourite. We favour Yorkshire tea however, any strong black tea would be suitable. Warm, buttered, with a mug of strong Yorkshire tea is our preferred serving suggestion.

Date and walnut is a classic cake combo. This slightly crumblier, un-iced version is lovely sliced and spread with butter.

Another traditional pairing is Earl Grey tea with a slice of lemon; here it is in the guise of a cake! Accompany it with a cup of Darjeeling, or double up on the flavour by serving it with a pot of Earl Grey tea.

A moist and spicy tea cake, one for autumn and winter. It’s full of unctuous golden syrup, black molasses and Muscovado sugar. This cake can also be served as a dessert, warm with lots of creamy custard poured over.

Do you have a favourite cake to eat with a cup of tea? Tell us about it below.

This content was originally published here.