We hope you all had a lovely weekend. As you know Phil and I are currently living it up stateside and taking a couple of weeks out to spend with friends and family and have some much deserved chill time.
The exciting news though, is that back in Edinburgh, Phil and I have two very very good friends, Clair and Nick, who it just so happens are not only very nice people, but are also super crafty (Clair jumped in at the last minute before Phil’s birthday to help me finish up my All-American Birthday Garlands) and are both extra talented bakers (Clair’s scones are to die for and Nick is a dab hand at bread and macaroons).
So, in our absence, they have kindy offered to fill in the gap and share with you one of their favourite recipes, and Earl Grey Chocolate Cake. Phil and I have both tried Clair and Nicks version of this cake before and it is totally delicious! The end product is a moist moist chocolate cake with a beautiful, slightly more grown up scent. So, we are as excited for this post as you all are.
We are both super grateful for Clair and Nick for sharing this recipe with you all and for being such good friends. So, we will hand over and let them take it from here, but fear not, we will be back next week,
Sam and Phil xx
Hello everyone! While Sam and Phil are relaxing on holiday we thought we could step in for a blog entry or two and share a few bits and pieces with you that we have found truly delicious. We are big fans of cake (who isn’t?!) and this one certainly met all our cake-y expectations. This cake puts a British twist (and what’s more British than a good ol’ cuppa?!) on an all-round favourite and is great for every occasion; the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee is just around the corner and all the shops are spilling over with British-themed baking goods and party gear, so what more of an excuse do we need?!
The flavour of the tea lends a freshness to the otherwise rich cake; truly scrumptious! The recipe we used was torn out of a local magazine aptly named “Foodies” and for months was stashed in a cookbook alongside other scraps of paper and inevitably we lost it. Handily the recipe was also on their website and can be found here.
The cake has three parts to it and we stretched out making it over a whole day – we’re sure that making it could be done a lot quicker but there was much bowl licking and shopping to go out and do in between.
Your essential ingredients are as follows;
For the cake:
6 Earl Grey teabags – we used Twinings, but any good quality brand of tea would suit.
150ml boiling water
100g unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus extra for greasing
3 large free-range eggs
150g soft dark brown sugar
100g light muscovado sugar
250g self-raising flour
120g plain chocolate (70% cocoa solids), melted
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp Greek yoghurt
For the Earl Grey Cream:
4 Earl Grey teabags
100ml boiling water
3 tbsp sugar – we used caster sugar but you could also use granulated or muscovado sugar.
250g cream cheese – we used a ‘light’ version by accident but it doesn’t make any difference.
For the Ganache topping:
150g plain chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
100ml double cream
3 tbsp runny honey
1) A little bit of prep – You want to first make the cake. We got all our ingredients for the cake weighed out and put them in handy little bowls. Place the Earl Grey tea bags in the 150ml of boiling water and leave them to stew for 5 minutes before squeezing the water out of them and discarding the tea bags. To melt the chocolate we would advise using a bain marie rather than a microwave oven as you are less likely to burn it.
2) Ovens at the ready – Grease a 9 ½ inch round cake tin and line with baking parchment. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit, or gas mark 4).
3) Start mixing – You then want to have all your little bowls of ingredients next to a food processor – if you don’t have one you could easily combine all the ingredients by hand and just make sure that everything is well mixed. Tip all of the cake ingredients into the food processor and turn on, blending for a minute or two until you have a nice smooth chocolate cake batter. Tip the batter into the lined cake tin, smoothing the surface, or as we prefer, give it a gentle wiggle to make sure the batter is evenly spread.
4) Bake and cool – Pop it into the oven on the middle shelf for 50 minutes. It should be firm when baked and a cocktail stick or skewer should come out clean when you poke it into the middle of the cake. Leave it in the cake tin to cool for 20 minutes and then remove it and the grease-proof paper and leave it to cool completely on a wire rack for a couple of hours.
5) Let’s get creamy – Once the cake has cooled completely, it’s time to slice it in half through the middle. You will need a steady hand and a sharp bread knife or a fancy cake leveler; we opted for the lo-tech approach. Once you’ve lopped the top of the cake off, it’s ready for the Earl Grey cream filling.
6) Make some ganache – First of all, put your teabags into a saucepan and cover with 100ml of boiling water and leave to brew for five minutes. As before, remove the teabags and squeeze out all the goodness. Add the sugar to the pan and allow to boil for five minutes until it’s turned thick and syrupy. Leave this to cool off for ten minutes before whisking into the cream cheese. Plop the mixture onto the bottom half of the cake and spread over evenly using a spatula. Replace the lid of the cake and you’re ready for the final step- the ganache.
7) Everything’s better with chocolate – Melt your chocolate over a bain marie. Add in the cream and honey and mix well. At this point, we left the mixture to cool for around five minutes before pouring and spreading over the cake as it was really runny!
8) All done – Lick the spoon and the bowl (hey, it means less washing up!).
The cake should then be left for the topping to cool and set for at least an hour (we struggled, I’ll be honest!)
Enjoy with a cup of tea. We did! We hope you like it. Over and out!
Clair and Nick