Sally Lunn Tea Bread - Original Recipe

"I grew up in the West Country of England near the Roman city of Bath. A favourite treat on a Saturday was to go to home of the famous Bath buns and have them toasted with lashings of butter. Sally Lunn sold these buns in Bath in the 1700s and you can still buy them there today. This is the original recipe for Sally Lunn buns. Prep time does not include time for batter to froth and dough to rise."
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Ready In:




  • Preheat oven to 425f, grease a 6 inch deep cake tin.
  • Combine all the batter ingredients in a bowl, beat until smooth and leave in a warm place until it goes frothy.
  • Add all the dough ingredients to the batter and stir until smooth. Pour batter into the tin, cover and leave until doubled in size.
  • Bake uncovered for 35 minutes, until golden brown.
  • Turn out on wire rack and leave to cool.
  • This mixture can be made as one large loaf, or as smaller buns which can be split and toasted.

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  1. 4 Stars for the recipe, 2 Stars for my flavor opinion. I had to make some changes to this, but I tried to minimize the changes to stay as true to the recipe as possible. For the ingredients, I had to make homemade mixed spice (using: as this is not available locally. Other than that, I used standard granulated sugar rather than the finer caster sugar. For my method, I warmed the milk to 115f to make sure to activate the dry yeast, and I let the batter sit to "go frothy" for a good ten minutes. I added the egg and butter (melted) to the batter before the sugar, flour, and spices (which I had mixed together). Once mixed, it was a very sticky, not really pour-able dough. However, I used an 8-inch ceramic cake dish, and had no problem patting the dough out to reach the edges of the dish. I covered and left the dish in a spot that was about 85f. The dough had doubled in 40 minutes. I really wanted to stir it down and let it rise again, but I resisted the urge to try and stay more true to the recipe. The top of the dough was not smooth at all. I baked it at 350f for 23 minutes at which point the internal temperature was just above 200f. It was golden brown. I turned it out of the dish and left it to cool as instructed. The bread still had a rough top to it and the kitchen smelled of Christmas. Trying the bread, it was on the lighter side, neither moist nor dry, just as bread should be. So as a recipe, it turned out to be a good bread. That said, neither of us, nor the people at work prefer this spiced bread. Once person said it was like if you added chai tea to bread. Made again without the spices, this might have worked for us.
  2. Well, the bun I ended up with was more like a light-ish (in texture) cake rather than a bread-bun. The final dough (at step 3) was quite thick and sticky and ended up stretched out quite a lot to reach the sides of the tin prior to letting it rise. It did rise though, but didn't smooth off on top as much as I thought it would. I wonder therefore if the mixture ended up too thick. I definitely used 5 floz of milk, but is that actually enough?<br/><br/>During cooking the top darkened very quickly as well so I had to turn the heat down after 10 minutes to 180c (356f). The sides also came out a little darker than I expected (not burnt though, don't panic!).<br/><br/>It was too late in the evening to try some so had a couple of slices for breakfast, one of which I toasted. It was nice enough, My 11-yr-old daughter also had a slice then asked for another, so it can't be all bad.<br/><br/>However, it wasn't as light and fluffy as I expected from what I'd seen on a short film in The Great British Bake Off (2013).<br/><br/>So, the jury is still out as to whether this is really a good recipe or not (after all, I may not have left the batter to go frothy for long enough).


I find cooking very relaxing and love to experiment. My food hero is Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall; the idea of growing your own veg and rearing your own animals in a free-range, organic way is very appealing. <br> <br>When not cooking I work from home for a tech company in Finland, love animals, old cars, travel and good restaurants! <br> <br>How I rate recipes: <br> <br>5 * Recipe worked perfectly, no substitutes needed and family raved about it. <br>4 * Recipe worked well, a few substitutes were made to suit taste. Family loved it. <br>3 * Recipe worked fairly well, a few changes to technique or substitutions were needed. Family liked it. <br>2 * Recipe didn't work particularly well. It was edible but wouldn't cook again. <br>1* Recipe didn't work at all. It wasn't edible and we wouldn't cook again. <br> <br>This is Izzy, she's our 1973 EMPI GTV Conversion <br><IMG src=> <br> <br> <br><img src=>
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