By Jake Surman
To keep us fuelled on high energy days in the hills, we climbers often rely on calorie-packed snacks. I’m sure that I’m like many climbers in that I feel guilty when tucking into the fat-laden snacks of chocolate bars and cakes. Energy from such sources to me stands in stark contrast to all that effort put in during training sessions at the training board or local climbing wall. Whilst they probably don’t make much of a difference to my body weight, I’d prefer not to feel guilty whilst, or after, snacking at the crag. This is usually compounded by the fact that you don’t really have a clue as to quite how much fat goes into those goodies bought from the corner shop. Even worse is whilst baking at home, realising quite how much melted butter goes into making those wonderfully sticky and gooey flapjacks… Furthermore, following the excesses of a food-heavy yuletide break, I’m following the standard New Years’ resolution of aiming to cut-out the crap and get back on the healthy-living bandwagon! As a solution, I’ve revived a family recipe for a tasty Fruit Loaf that contains no margarine or butter. However, it still remains full of those complex carbs and sugars that keep you powered up on big days out. Now I’m not saying that this is definitively healthier than your favourite tuck-shop treat, but at least by knowing what has gone into it your training mindset can be put at ease that all those long hours of effort are worth it!
- 2 Cups of All-Bran Cereal
- 2 Cups of Dried Fruit (e.g. Sultanas, Raisins, Apricots, Dates etc)
- 1 Cup Soft Brown Sugar
- 1 Cup of Milk
- 1 Cup of Cold Water
- Zest and juice of 1 Orange
- 2 Cups of Self-Raising Flour
- Mix together all of the ingredients (apart from the self-raising flour and orange) in a large mixing bowl and leave to soak for at least 30 minutes, ideally overnight, in the fridge.
- After soaking, add the zest and juice of the orange and mix.
- Add the 2 cups of self-raising flour and again mix.
- Pour the entire mixture into a loaf tin and bake in the oven at 180°C for 1 hour, or until a metal skewer can be placed in the centre of the fruit loaf and removed clean.