Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake

January 15, 2014 · 94 comments in Cake

Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake

a.k.a the most sophisticated loaf cake you’ll ever eat. (There’s poppy seeds in there too – HELlo – but that would make the title even longer than it already is).

The loaf cake started out as an idea for a flavour pairing whilst I was drinking a cup of Earl Grey. It has always been my favourite tea – there’s something so dreamy about the aroma, exuding calmness and comfort.

Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake

As it has a bunch of flavours going on in it too, it makes an ideal tea for infusing into foods, too! Hooray!

At first I tried straight up throwing tea leaves into the batter – it didn’t really do much though. The flavour wasn’t very strong so it kind of got lost behind the lemon zest I’d added to the batter (lemon/orange are best friends with Earl Grey). I thought that my craving for an Earl Grey baked good was a lone venture, but I put a pic of the cake on instagram and I was pretty surprised that quite a few people were equally enthused.

I decided to not give up on the cake, and tried another round of lets-try-to-get-tea-into-my-cake.

Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake

SO I tried a) reducing the sugar, b) increasing the butter (fat is flavour, yo) and c) actually adding brewed tea (very, very strong tea) and the leaves to the batter. It worked!

Having my tea and eating it too. Double TEAm. Hah. I crack myself up – probably only myself though.

Side note: I blame that on my friends for telling lame jokes around me too often. One of them keeps pulling a spare button out of her pocket and dropping it when she picks things up and yelling ‘BUTTON FINGERS’.

AND I CAN’T STOP LAUGHING.

Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake

Ohkay, back to cake story time.

I also put in blueberries the second time round because when baked the berries get that aromatic scent that is EXACTLY what the tea has going on. Talk about dream team, this trio of lemon, tea and blueberries rules.

Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake

Lastly I glazed the cake with a tangy lemon glaze just because YOU CAN”T STOP ME from doing that when there’s lemon in ANYthang. I will glaze it behind your back if you don’t let me. Lemon glaze is the best.

No sir, I’m not dipping the slice of cake that I’m about to eat into the bowl of glaze.

(but I actually am. Shut up.)

Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake

 

Earl Grey Tea, Blueberry and Lemon Cake
1 Earl Grey Tea bag
6 tbsp (80 g) unsalted butter
1/2 cup (105 g) granulated sugar
2 eggs
1/4 cup (60 ml) buttermilk or yogurt
zest of 1 lemon
1 1/2 cups + 1 tbsp (200 g) all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp poppy seeds (optional)
1 cup (125 g) blueberries
For the Glaze:
1/2 cup (65 g) powdered sugar
lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350 F (180 C)

Soak the tea bag in 1/2 cup of boiling water for 10 minutes whilst you melt the butter in a medium pot. Beat the sugar and eggs into the butter, followed by the buttermilk and lemon zest. Remove the tea bag from the water, pour the brewed tea into the pot and stir together. Cut open the tea bag and stir the tea leaves into the pot as well. Add the flour, baking powder + soda, salt, poppy seeds (if using) and stir together until just combined. Stir in the blueberries.

Pour the batter into a greased and floured large loaf pan. Bake for 45-55 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool for 10 minutes in the pan before turning out onto a wire rack.

Make the glaze by stirring together the powdered sugar and enough lemon juice to make a thick, pourable mixture (add the lemon juice slowly, stirring between additions). Pour over the warm loaf and leave to cool and set.

http://www.topwithcinnamon.com/2014/01/earl-grey-tea-blueberry-and-lemon-cake.html

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{ 83 comments… read them below or add one }

Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness January 15, 2014 at 12:41 am

Blueberry and lemon is one of my favorite flavor combinations! But, adding in the earl grey tea? GENIUS! I can only imagine the depth of flavor that creates as well as how moist and light this loaf is with the yogurt!

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Sarah | The Sugar Hit January 15, 2014 at 1:33 am

Earl grey for the win. It’s the tea of champions. TEAm Earl Grey, amirite?

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:20 pm

ERM YES I LOVE YOU FOR PUNNING ALONG WITH ME

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Jessica's Dinner Party January 15, 2014 at 1:36 am

I love tea scented baked goods, and earl grey happens to be one of my favorites too. Feeling inspired!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:19 pm

Yay I’m glad you agree! Thanks Jessica

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Angela @ Canned Time January 15, 2014 at 2:24 am

Fresh or frozen blueberries?
Either way, they had to be a perfect bite a cake there….love tea and cakes though it’s not so normal here in D. C.
Thanks for the idea,….off to buy some Earl Grey!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:19 pm

I used frozen, but they were from the summer time so they were pretty good :) I find it easier to mix frozen blueberries into batter!

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Zinny | The Vanilla Hub January 15, 2014 at 2:49 am

Beautiful! As always! Idea, execution, photos! Love them all!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:18 pm

Thanks Zinny!

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Shobelyn January 15, 2014 at 3:20 am

Earl grey tea is my daughter’s favorite tea too. I am going to make this loaf to pair it with the tea. Last week, I made apple bundt cake to pair go with our chamomile tea and earl grey tea.

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:17 pm

That sounds so nice!! Thanks Shobelyn :)

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Jessica January 15, 2014 at 4:33 am

Hii I absolutely love your blog! Especially the photography and the gifs! Its amazing how you are able to balance school and your blog, congratulations! Oh and I think that a couple of your last recipes aren’t listed in your recipe archive, I was just wondering because I tend to use the archive to browse for recipes and realized that some such as the oatmeal chocolate chip cookie pancake or the peach and pecan brown sugar parfait are not listed! Anyways, your blog is among one of my favourites!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:17 pm

Thanks so much Jessica! Yeah, about that…I’m really. Crap at updating my archive! I tend to go through every few months and just do a major update hahah. Sorry bout that :/ if you need to find a recipe you can use the search bar on here or just google the recipe name with ‘top with cinnamon’ at the end

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angela@mykikicake January 15, 2014 at 6:00 am

Your photos make me want to lick the screen!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:14 pm

Ahaha thanks Angela!

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Betsy | JavaCupcake.com January 15, 2014 at 6:48 am

The styling of these photos is so beautiful! :) Love it!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:13 pm

Thanks Betsy!

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Belinda@themoonblushbaker January 15, 2014 at 8:12 am

I do not think their are enough recipe with earl grey! Thank you for your tea loaf, that glaze is making me want a big slice.

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:13 pm

I know! I never see them around so I was like ‘right time to fix it’

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Sophia January 15, 2014 at 8:34 am

The cake looks wonderful! Glad you posted the recipe (I got very excited about that first instagram!). I have been playing around with tea-flavoured anything lately as well and find a double or triple hit of tea works best – infusing tea leaves in melted butter, adding some ground tea to the batter and covering the cake in an icing made with strong-brewed tea!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:11 pm

Thanks Sophia! I did think about the butter infusion route (and used it in that first cake I’d made – kind of half-assed though, just left the leaves in the butter after it was melted for like 5 mins so I don’t think it actually did anything haha) but was afraid of burning the leaves! I will DEFFO try it out next time though :)

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Rochelle @ Oh So Sweet Baker January 15, 2014 at 10:27 am

I love putting tea into baked goods. I find the best way to infuse the tea into the cake is blitzing it in with a food processor. Works a treat!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:09 pm

Ooh cool, thanks for the tip!!

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Skye January 15, 2014 at 11:17 am

What a dreamy cake! When I was little this lady called Eileen often used to babysit me and she would always make tea cake – it was this amazing fruit cake that tasted very strongly of earl grey. She always said that she would soak the dried fruits in a strong brew for 48 hours.

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:08 pm

Thanks Skye! I was thinking about soaking the blueberries in tea before hand but didn’t have enough time in the end! Seems like it would be a really good plan.

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LC-NL January 15, 2014 at 1:13 pm

Where do you get the paper you used to line the tin?

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Izy January 15, 2014 at 6:22 pm

I got them from the supermarket (but I’m in the UK). You can probably get them online – just search for loaf tin liners :)

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LC-NL January 16, 2014 at 7:37 am

Thanks! By the time this kind of baking technology comes in the NL, better not hold my breath!

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Sophia @ NY Foodgasm January 15, 2014 at 2:40 pm

Absolutely gorgeous and man this recipe sounds AMAZING! I cannot wait to try it! Perfect for tea time!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:07 pm

Thanks so much Sophia!

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Katrina @ WVS January 15, 2014 at 2:51 pm

Tea in a cake sounds like a fabulous plan! Plus lemon and blueberry are so fabulous together :)

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:07 pm

It’s such a good move, I don’t know why I never did it before. Thanks Katrina!

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Anjanee January 15, 2014 at 5:41 pm

This looks so delicious, I wish I could eat it right now. I can’t wait to try it out this week! Great photos by the way, I love the warm feeling they have.

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:06 pm

Thanks Anjanee! :)

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Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe January 15, 2014 at 8:52 pm

Earl grey tops my tea list too! I love that you stuck it into a cake and added lemon, one of my other favorite flavors. This would make THE perfect afternoon snack, or breakfast, or …well, anytime cake!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:05 pm

Yeeess!! Dude you are so right, I was eating this all day hahah :)

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vanillasugarblog January 15, 2014 at 11:02 pm

Gosh I think I did a green tea cake or cakelettes at some point.
But never an earl grey.
Chai, for sure, just for the scent it left in the house.
Gorgeous photos!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:05 pm

I am super interested in trying out matcha green tea powder in stuff! It can look really pretty :) and i imagine chai is also awesome :)

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Ala January 16, 2014 at 2:54 am

As I was reading this, I just relived an English tea time experience my friend and I recently had at the Huntington Library (I guess tea time in England is always English tea time though, so nothing special? Or is it? I’ve always wondered if tea time is actually a standard thing for y’all over yonder…). Anyway, the tea room then reminded me of this amazing Earl Grey ice cream I always get from an ice cream shop up north, which makes a mean frozen version of Earl Gray meets toffee meets homemade cone with chocolate tip. Are Earl Grey baked goodies and desserts also common in the UK? They’re like a total novelty around here. Looks delish! :D

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 12:02 pm

Haha WELL it’s a really confusing situation with tea time here. Basically if someone says to their kids ‘it’s tea time’ they mean dinner, but like EARLY dinner (5 or 6 pm) because the kids are young so eat early. If you’re out in the country side, you’ll often see tea rooms and cafes serving tea with cakes or scones at around 3-5pm but otherwise, you don’t really get tea time. It isn’t a thing that happens. A thing that DOES happen is me drinking tea when I get home at 4 or 5 pm, so I guess I kind of do have tea time!

That sounds so good, I’d love to try making it. I can imagine it going ridoncs well with fruity desserts in the summer. But no, there aren’t really earl grey desserts here – only sometimes at fancy restaurants.

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Emily January 16, 2014 at 3:14 am

OMG this looks awesome!!! And the flavour combination sounds AHHHMAzing!! Can’t wait to try it :D

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:58 am

Thanks Emily!!

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Malin January 16, 2014 at 11:33 am

Looks awesome, need to make this one. I am making your chocolate-caramel dessert for 17 people tomorrow!!

How big was the loaf pan that you used for the earl grey cake?

Hot tip: If you coat the berries with some flour before butting them in the batter, they will not sink down at the bottom….

Thanks for your great blog!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:57 am

Holy crap that’s a lot of people!

It was a 1lb loaf tin, not sure why but loaf tins are always measured by a weight in the UK..so I don’t know what the measurements were. It’s quite wide and deep.

Haha I know of the tip, It never works for me and I don’t really mind having sinking berries! I’d rather not have extra washing up to do either (I’m way lazy)

Thanks malin!

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April January 16, 2014 at 3:19 pm

Good morning! Saw your recipe pinned on Pinterest. Looks awesome! I will definitely be trying it out. My FAVORITE cookie recipe also calls for Earl Grey tea and the unexpected flavor of the tea in a baked goods always blows everyone away. So good! These are the cookies:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/claire-robinson/earl-grey-shortbread-cookies-recipe/index.html

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:55 am

I love the idea of earl grey shortbread! I think my dad would probably like it too, he always eats shortbread with a cup of tea so flavouring the shortbread would be even better :) thanks for the link!

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Deirdre January 16, 2014 at 10:53 pm

Beautiful! Earl grey cupcakes are my favourite! I have a recipe on my blog. http://www.thekitschcook.blogspot.com

Keep up the funny anecdotes!

Deirdre

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:54 am

Yuuuhuummm! Haha I will ;) thanks Dierdre

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Steph January 17, 2014 at 2:44 am

Um, you are actually the best. I almost spat out my water when I read ‘double TEAm’ – v.punny stuff! I’ve never *gasp* tried earl grey tea, but I will definitely try baking this heaven of a cake x

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:52 am

AHAHA, well it sounds like YOU’RE the best! Thanks for finding that funny! Ooh you need to do it, it’s really tasty

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Ibbs January 17, 2014 at 4:06 pm

ermagherdddddd YES purlease to this flavour combo!!
It’s so sophisticated and at the same time so awesome, we can be ladies that have massive slabs of tea AND sip away at our china tea cups
x x x
{The Lobster & Me}

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:51 am

Uhhmmm yeah we can. So sophisticated ;)

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Trisha January 17, 2014 at 4:40 pm

yum TING!

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Heather January 17, 2014 at 9:39 pm

Stunning photography Izy.

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Rachel January 18, 2014 at 2:37 am

Oh man oh man I LOVE earl grey, I’ve been going baking mad with it.
Well I was until this heatwave struck. This looks absolutely perfect, I sometimes steep my loose leaf tea in milk that I add to recipes and it works a charm! But i’ll have to try just adding straight up strong tea – genius.

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:50 am

Hahah it’s so so so delicious!! Ooh that sounds good :) I’ll try that next time!

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Adam January 18, 2014 at 3:44 am

Absolutely delicious!

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Anna January 18, 2014 at 3:10 pm

Greetings,
I really like the idea you have for this cake with infusing the tea in. Have you tried to brew the tea with loose leaf tea and brewing it really strong (using lots of tea leaves but brewing for the typical 3 minutes for Earl Gray) so that you don’t put the actual tea leaves in the cake. My concern is that the leaves would make the cake taste bitter whether they were tiny from a tea bag or larger if loose leaf. Obviously you wouldn’t want full loose leaves in the cake. Also, have you tried the cake with other fruits? Raspberries or strawberries? Have you tried lightly coating the berries with flour first before putting in the batter so they don’t sink to the bottom but stay evenly distributed?

I’m excited to give your cake a go. I love Earl Gray too! Thanks for the inspiration!

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Izy January 20, 2014 at 11:49 am

Hi Anna!
I would have done that but I only had one bag of earl grey tea left so it was all I could use! Also apparently brewing tea for longer is better, releases more antioxidants ;) the tea leaves we’re quite fine as they were from a bag, but I didn’t find them bitter plus I really like the speckled effect they have! This was the first time I’d made this loaf so I haven’t tried other fruits, I had been craving the pairing of blueberries and earl grey tea so that’s why I used them this time. I’d probably try others too when I make it again. I’ve found that the flour method of coating fruit is unnecessary b/c I don’t think it works and also I don’t really mind when the fruit sinks haha! I’d rather not have the extra bowl to wash up too, tbh :)

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Kate January 19, 2014 at 5:06 pm

that glaze Izy. i want to lick it. but i can’t. i’d be licking a screen dohhhh

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Jenny January 20, 2014 at 3:09 am

What a killer combination of flavors!

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Ashley January 20, 2014 at 2:38 pm

I have the same dumb jokes that go through my head all-of-thee-time. High five for that! Amazing looking bread. I adore anything with lemon!

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kobi January 26, 2014 at 3:36 pm

i just made it ! it is a success . Great recipe . i am a tea drinker so would definitely up the tea bag to 2 for more flavour.
its amazing to see blueberries oozing on the cake.

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Arina January 26, 2014 at 10:53 pm

Izy! Thank you for this amazing recipe! I tried this the other day and my family adored it.

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beetsmekatie January 29, 2014 at 6:26 pm

absolutely yum!! am thinking this will be perfs for curling up and reading a book. love your blog!

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Georgina January 30, 2014 at 9:30 pm

I love me anything with Earl Grey baked into it, but I am a little dubious about the blueberries, we have a love/hate relationship. I shall trust your judgement and give them a go though! Xx
http://www.thelibrarian.co.uk

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lauren January 31, 2014 at 8:18 pm

I love the idea of this cake! I really want to make it but i have no loaf tin, do you think it would work in a 20cm (8in) tin?

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Izy January 31, 2014 at 8:31 pm

You probably can! You’ll just need to watch the timing as it’ll probably bake for a different amount of time

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Anna February 2, 2014 at 10:48 pm

I tried your recipe today but something went wrong… The cake didn’t rise and turned out to be very dense (like that one time when I forgot to put the melted butter into a lemon loaf cake -.-) could that be a result of over-mixing the batter?

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Izy February 2, 2014 at 10:51 pm

could be from using old baking powder. If it’s too old it won’t work! http://www.thekitchn.com/baking-tricks-how-to-tell-if-b-111759

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Lana P. February 14, 2014 at 1:44 pm

Oh my god! That’s such a brilliant idea! I love Earl Grey so much, especially The Earl’s Garden, which is David’s Tea leaf loose Earl Grey mix with strawberries and other berries! So, I think, I’ll try this beautiful recipe using my favourite tea in the world :) It’s a perfect match – berries in tea and actual berries in cake! :)
It looks so delicious!
And don’t worry, I cracked myself up too, the joke “double TEAm” it’s pretty hilarious! :)

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Geoff February 22, 2014 at 2:34 pm

Laughed so hard at “button fingers” that I decided to give the cake a go!
In the oven right now and smells amazing – thank you for the recipe!

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Izy February 22, 2014 at 6:44 pm

hahah amazing, I’ll tell my friend – she will be very pleased!

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Meg February 23, 2014 at 4:07 pm

Just made this this morning and loved it! I added a few more blueberries, but other than that followed the recipe exactly. Next time I may omit the icing, as it was a little too sweet for me. Overall a great recipe, thanks so much for sharing!

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Emma February 25, 2014 at 11:39 am

Hello! Stumbled across this recipe this morning, looking for something to use up fridge contents and keep me entertained as I wait for my first baby to arrive – a week late already! Over here in ol’ Blighty (uk) we can also get Lady Grey tea which earl grey infused with lemon and orange – my favourite by far and sounds perfect for this recipe! I’ll let you know how it goes!

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Michele April 19, 2014 at 4:58 pm

Love, love, love this cake! Making it for the second time to introduce it to my family for our Easter brunch tomorrow. However, last time the cake was perfect.. The icing not so much. It didn’t become white as seen on the pictures but just transparant. Is it because I used to much lemon juice?

Greetings from Belgium!

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mona April 30, 2014 at 1:29 pm

thank you for combining three of my favorite flavors in one cake. it came out moist and eye-rollingly (i know, not a word) delicious. i used stash tea’s double bergamot earl grey just for that extra citrus hit and it was perfect.

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emma May 11, 2014 at 12:53 pm

Heck wow. Cosmic intervention – Just brewed a ridiculously large pot of earl grey, and there’s lemons and blueberries AND poppyseeds in the kitchen all at the Same Time. I believe this is what some may call ‘fate’.
I am so pleased. Might even add lime zest too (!)

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Kendra July 6, 2014 at 6:26 pm

Hello Izy…I’ve made the cake today, and I just have a question. How do you prevent soggy pockets in the cake where the berries have burst and the juices make the bottom of the cake especially, soggy? I see yours looks absolutely perfect! I decreased the amount of sugar but it turns out that 1/2 cup is actually just perfect. Well, good thing I made the glaze or the cake would’ve been really bland haha.

Thanks and hoping to hear from you :)

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Taylor July 10, 2014 at 5:01 am

This recipe looks great! Do you think this will work with other teas? I don’t have any Earl Grey. Do you think this would taste good with no tea at all? Thanks :)

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Izy July 10, 2014 at 3:11 pm

I think it’d work with something like Jasmine tea or Lady grey. Otherwise just replace the tea with an equal volume of water!

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Taylor July 10, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Would that be half a cup of water?

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Izy July 10, 2014 at 4:41 pm

yep!

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