Lavender & Earl Grey Tea Cakes

By jove, one has a right royal treat in store with these fancy tea cakes! Don’t be alarmed by the use of two rather uncommon cake ingredients here… I can assure you that these are fit for any discerning cake King or Queen!  Earl Grey tea and lavender flowers pair beautifully in these moist and lightly fragrant darlings, delicately sweetened with honey and dolloped with a simple ricotta frosting. If you can’t find dried lavender flowers at a health food store (or in the tea aisle at your supermarket), you can use lavender straight from your garden (or from your lovely neighbours…) If you don’t have mini loaf tins, don’t despair, these work equally well made in cupcake tins. Cuppa and cake…what more could one want?

 

Cake Ingredients

1 ¾ cups ground almonds

1 cup of white rice flour

1 ½ teaspoon of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

½ cup of room temperature butter

3/4 cup of runny honey

3 free-range eggs

1 tablespoon of vanilla essence

1 cup of milk of choice (dairy or soy work best)

2 tablespoons (approximately 4 opened tea bags) of Earl Grey tea

2 tablespoons of lavender flowers (can be bought as tea bags, or loose leaf tea from specialty stores)

1 teaspoon of orange zest

 

Ricotta Frosting Ingredients

2 cups of ricotta (approx. 500g)

¼ cup of runny honey

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Lightly grease mini loaf tins with butter
  2. In a bowl, combine the almond flour, rice flour, baking powder and salt
  3. In a mixer (or a bowl with a handheld cake mixer), beat butter, honey, vanilla, orange zest and 1 tablespoon of earl grey tea leaves until light and fluffy
  4. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each
  5. In a small saucepan, heat milk and 1 tablespoon of earl grey tea leaves and 2 tablespoons of lavender until just boiled. Remove from heat, cover and let steep for a few minutes until the milk changes colour. Strain out the tea leaves with a tea strainer and set the tea milk aside
  6. Add the combined flour mixture into the wet mixture, and finally pour in the tea milk. Mix just until blended
  7. Pour into the prepared tins and bake for 20 minutes, or until lightly golden on the top and a skewer comes out clean
  8. To make the topping, lightly whisk together honey and ricotta and then dollop or spread over cakes

 

Nutrition BIte: Lavender – Lavender is well known as a fragrant flower, but it’s also a delightful edible herb. You can use lavender to add something special to baked goods and other recipes although as the flavour is rather strong, it’s definitely a case of less is more. Like most herbs, lavender provides minerals and vitamins and has the added bonus of having the ability to help aid relaxation. So, sit back, and enjoy!

 

 

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