Earl Grey Tea Bread 

Surprisingly for someone who loves tea as much as I do, it took me until my 32nd birthday to try tea bread. 
I don’t know why I never had this before its lovely!  And as you’d expect from the name it goes perfect with my copious amounts of tea. 

My boyfriend bought me my first ever one as a birthday present and it came from an expensive artisan shop so when I tried it it was beautiful.  The next one I tried was from Aldi as I never noticed it in there before but now I suddenly saw it. Now had I tried the Aldi one first I’d have loved it but as I had the Buxton tea bread it just didn’t taste anywhere near as good. 

As usual this prompted me to try and make my own version. 

Good to know – Tea Loaf

This is the recipe I have used for my base but instead of Roobios I have used a lovely loose Earl Grey tea to infuse my fruit. I left it for about 5 hours to soak and I also added some extra mixed spice and some cinnamon. To top the cake off, for the last 20 minutes I have sprinkled the cake with a mix of brown sugar and cinnamon. 
Now unfortunately I can’t tell you how this has come out yet because although the cake looks and smells amazing, it says to wait at least two days! 

Now I’m stuck looking at a lovely hot cake which I can’t eat. I really hope it’s worth it because I don’t have much restraint for resisting cake but if it makes it special then it’ll be worth it. 

Naked wedding cake

The last three days have involved some planning and baking as I was asked by my sister if I could make her friends wedding cake. 

My initial reaction (inside my head) was “no way in hell can I do this!”  but the story of her cake maker dropping out and her plan to go to Costco and buy a random cake was enough to get me straight into the kitchen.

As Sophie the bride had absolutely zero ideas on likes, colour schemes, flowers… Well, anything at all!  I sent her a couple of ideas. She liked them but said they were too fancy as she was having a rustic wedding in her parents back garden. 
Ah, rustic made me think of a style of cake I’d recently seen. A naked cake. She loved it and so the idea took off.

A naked cake is basically a layered sponge with no traditional icing around it so you can clearly see the cake and the layers. 

For the wedding cake I’ve kept it very simple, just a light vanilla sponge with buttercream and strawberry jam. 
I had an idea how I wanted it to look but it wasn’t until it was coming together that it finally took on its own style.  My mom isn’t convinced it’s very “wedding cake” but I like it. It’s different and fun and hopefully will taste bloody amazing! 

Good luck tomorrow Sophie and Joe xx


Naked Wedding Cake

For the cake:
18oz Caster sugar
18oz Margarine
20oz Self raising flour
9 eggs
2tsp vanilla extract

For the buttercream:
750g butter
1kg icing sugar
1tsp vanilla extract

Plus:
1 1/2 jars of jam
Icing sugar to dust
Edible glitter

This recipe will look daunting when you look at the amount of ingredients, just remember, it’s very simple, just two big cakes! 

I made this in two cakes over two nights. The first I made as a 10oz cake and the second as an 8oz cake. 

Preheat the oven to 180c and line a cake tin. 

In a large bowl or mixer (I used my Kenwood mixer with a K beater) put the margarine and sugar. Beat until light and pale. Mix in the vanilla. 

Add in an egg and some flour. Keep doing this till all the eggs and flour are incorporated. 

Pour into a cake tin and bake until the top springs back. For the 8oz cake it took me 1 hour and for the 10oz it took 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Once cooked, remove from oven and let it cool. When cool cut the cake into layers. 

When the cake is very cool then make the the buttercream by mixing all the butter and icing sugar together with the vanilla. 

Keep mixing till the butter is lighter.

Pipe circles of buttercream onto each layers and fill in the circles with jam (as on the picture) 

Finally finish the cake with flowers, glitter, signs or whatever you need to make the cake your own!