We used to call this Tea Brack, I suppose because of soaking the fruit in cold tea beforehand. We used to have great Halloweens, but actually rarely did the whole decoration “thing”. We did, however, play games. One was where my mum used to stand on a chair and have an apple which was smeared in jam hanging from a twine the full length of her height. As she swung the apple, we had to try and take a big bite out of it while the jam smeared all over our faces and hair. Another was to have some money in a bottom of a basin of luke-warm water and we had to dip our heads in and try and get that coin. We would have lots and lots of callers for Trick or Treat, and monkey nuts and fruit were the main goodies. Things have changed. And it’s kind of sad that kids don’t call much anymore. I remember dressing up as Joanna Lumley in Ab Fab one year. Stuck two large Christmas decorations in my ears, lots of hairspray, cigarette, bottle of champers, syringe full of Botox and Bob really was my uncle. One of my better moments, because God help my children, I was never good with the old needle and thread and they either ended up in bin bags with things stuck on, or bought costumes. Terrible mother!! Anyway – to the recipe handed down by my grandmother.
1 lb of dried fruit (at least half raisins),
6 ozs brown sugar
Half pint of cold tea
1 lb plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon mixed spice
2 tablespoons milk
Grease 8″ tin and line with grease proof paper
Soak fruit and sugar in tea. Next day, sieve flour, baking powder and mixed spice. Stir in soaked mixture. Mix in beaten egg, milk and put in tin, .
Bake for 2 hours at 180 degs. Make sure to place a ring, a piece of cloth and a stick, all wrapped up in grease proof paper. Whoever gets the ring, will marry; whoever gets the cloth will be a nun, and whoever gets the stick will never marry