Tasty Tuesday - Christmas Fruit & Nut Bread

Can you believe it’s only 5 days until Christmas? Madness! Are you up to date with your Christmas to do lists or is it taking control of you at the moment?

Thankfully I was more organised this year and my sweet husband took some of the present buying on board this year for the nieces and nephews which helped a lot! Let’s just say I am truly out of touch with buying presents for young kids.

 I would have never thought I would have trouble with it but I do. I walk up and down the toy aisles wandering what kids like these days. It’s totally beyond me. I have a sinking feeling that I’m becoming that Aunt that buys you those gifts that you open and go “Thanks Aunty Mel” and inside the kid is really thinking – “Why did she buy me this, I don’t even like Ben10, that was so 2009” (Or whatever is the flavour of the day at that moment) And when present time comes round each year the kid cringes inside when I hand our present out because they know they’re going to have to pretend to like it!

I know I had a few of those moments as a child and I SO don’t want to be that type of present giver! On the other hand though we like to give gifts that have some value to it instead of a passing fad such as books, educational  type toys and games, DVD’s or something that will get used often and will be of benefit to the child. I won’t say I always succeed with this but hey I try!

Anyway onto cooking... I have one more last minute recipe for you to whip up before the big day. This one will only keep in you in the kitchen for an hour or so to free you up to continue wrapping all your Christmas presents. It’s a twist on the classic almond bread – my version is Christmas Fruit & Nut Bread. In truth it’s not actual bread as such but more a thinly sliced, crunchy biscuit in the shape of mini slices of bread - Cute.  These also make great gifts piled in stacks and wrapped with festive ribbon.

What more would your co-workers or boss want for Christmas than a yummy stack of Fruit and Nut Bread fresh from your kitchen... eh probably a Ipad Touch may be slightly more interesting, or a box with Michael Hill Jewellers written across it... anyway that is beside the point! They’ll still appreciate you thoughtfulness when they’re scoffing down this biscuits at morning tea with a good cup of tea or coffee! Plus you won’t have to worry about being the bad present giver with these little morsels. I’m sure you’ll be thanks many times possible with mouths full, overflowing with Fruit & Nut Bread.

The twist with this bread is the gorgeous combination of cranberries, apricots, walnuts, pistachios and almonds that create a gorgeous & festive array of colour in this thinly slice biscuit bread. You can play around with the combination of fruit and nuts to create your own take on this bread and give it your own twist.

Christmas Fruit & Nut Bread

3 egg whites
½ cup sugar
½ cup plain flour
½ cup spelt flour (* Can substitute with plain flour)
300g dried fruit & nuts
*I used a combination of cranberries, diced apricots, whole almonds, pistachios and walnuts)


Preheat oven to 180 C  and grease and line a loaf tin.
Beat the egg whites with an electric beater until soft peaks form. Add the sugar gradually and beat until dissolved and firm peaks form in the meringue mixture and it becomes thick and glossy.
Fold in the sifted flours and mixture of fruit and nuts to the meringue mixture. Spread mixture into greased loaf tin and bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Let the loaf cool in tin and then remove and wrap in a clean tea towel for a couple of hours to cool completely.
Using an electric knife cut into very thin slices. Place slices onto a lined baking tray in a single layer and bake at 150 C for 30-35 minutes or until dry and crisp. You will need to keep an eye on these biscuits so that the dried fruit does not burn.

Optional serving options: Drizzle slices with melted white or dark chocolate for a more decadent biscuit.

Fruit & Nut Bread will keep for at least a month in an airtight container.

How is your Christmas preparations going? I'll give you a word of warning... avoid the shops! I stupidly tried to go the other day and it was madness!



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