Dark and Sticky Gluten Free ‘Malt’ Loaf

Those who have followed me since my early blogging days may recall a quest I once undertook to find a coeliac-friendly alternative to malt loaf. Making gluten free cakes often just involves replacing the flour and adding a little more liquid to compensate for the drying starches; with malt loaf, the essential flavour is, well, malt; i.e. barley.


Why am I revisting this old thing now? Well firstly because at the weekend I attended the Blogfest conference and received a goody bag stuffed full of my old favourite Soreen. Lucky T’s contraband snack box is now overflowing! No fair! And secondly, I am currently learning some new food photography skills with Makelight which I wanted to try out. The ‘dark and moody’ lesson seemed just the ticket for such a sticky, smoky and slightly evil looking recipe; and it was certainly time to replace the snaps I originally took with my iPhone under artificial light.

I hope you enjoy the recipe and photos!


Gluten Free ‘Malt’ Style Loaf


  • 200ml strong black tea
  • 7 tbsp date syrup (plus a little extra for the top)
  • 2 tbsp rice syrup (or other light flavoured thick syrup. Be careful you don’t get ‘rice malt’ syrup which contains gluten)
  • 2 tbsp black treacle
  • 50g soft brown sugar
  • 200g dried prunes (or a mix of your favourite dried fruit)
  • 115g gluten free plain flour blend (I use Doves or Infinity Foods)
  • 120g buckwheat flour (be careful it’s marked ‘gluten free’ as many are cross contaminated)
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 3tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt


  1. Place the prunes, syrups, treacle, sugar and tea into a bowl and leave to soak for 15 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°c, grease and line a loaf tin.
  3. Place the flours, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt into a food processor, and whizz briefly to combine.
  4. Add the syrup and prune mixture, and whizz again to form a soft, sticky batter. Splodge this into your waiting loaf tin.
  5. Bake for about 45 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  6. Remove, and paint the top with syrup, and leave to cool in the tin.
  7. When cool, store in an airtight container for at least a day before tucking in – trust me, it’s worth the wait!

If you don’t have a food processor, you can just as easily mix by hand, I just wanted the pieces of prune to be smaller.



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