Skip to content


Your cart is empty

Irish Barmbrack Recipe


Don't turn your nose up at the thought of your granny's "fruitcake," this "fruit bead" is quite different and has its roots in the ancient Celtic harvest celebration Samhain. While its name, derived from the Irish báirín breac, or “speckled bread”, plays on an exterior that’s decidedly homely with a rich, spicy inside, this soft fruit bread is delicious. One delightful way to enjoy this bread is to slice and toast it then slather it with fresh Irish butter. yum


2 cups black tea, cooled

34 cup raisins

12 cup dried currants, cranberries, or cherries

2 tbsp. each candied lemon and orange peel, minced

2 cups flour, plus more

14 cup light brown sugar

2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

14 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg

14 tsp. ground cloves

6 tbsp. unsalted butter, preferably European-style like Kerrygold or Plugrá, melted, plus more

14 cup whole milk

1 egg, beaten

Assorted charms, wrapped individually in parchment paper

13 cup honey, warmed



Stir tea, raisins, currants, and candied lemon and orange peel in a bowl; cover with plastic wrap and let sit 2 hours, then drain and set aside. Heat oven to 325°. Whisk flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves in a bowl; make a well in the center. Mix reserved fruit, the butter, milk, and egg in a bowl and add to well; stir until a wet dough forms. Press dough into a greased 8" cake pan and push charms into dough. Bake until firm, 35–40 minutes. Brush with honey; bake 2 minutes more. Let cool slightly; serve with butter, if you like. Serves 6-8