Italian cooking is my absolute favourite, although I have to say I usually stick to the savoury side. However when reading Veggie’s November issue, this recipe from Melissa Forti who runs a tea room in North West Italy really caught my eye. I couldn’t resist making it as the flavours screamed Autumn and it sounded warming and comforting, which is exactly what you want from food this time of year.
For the cake
- 300g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
- 245ml milk
- 6 Chai tea bags
- 300g caster sugar
- 5 free-range eggs
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 350g plain flour
- 3½ tsp baking powder
- 1tsp ground cinnamon
- ½tsp ground cardamom
- ½tsp salt
For icing & garnish
- 200g butter, softened
- 80g acacia or other clear honey
- 500g icing sugar
- ½tsp freshly grated ginger
- 150g cream cheese
Preparation time: 35 mins
Cook time: 40 mins
- I started by greasing and lining my tins with butter and baking paper. The recipe advises using 20cm tins.
- In a pan I brought 245ml milk to a simmer, then I added 6 chai tea bags and left it to infuse for 8 minutes.
- To a mixing bowl I added 350g sieved plain flour, 3 ½ tsp baking powder, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, ½ tsp ground cardamom and ½ tsp salt.
- In a larger mixing bowl I creamed together 300g butter and 300g caster sugar. Then I added 5 eggs, one at a time and mixing between each addition. Then I added the chai tea and milk mixture along with 1 tsp vanilla extract.
- Finally I added the flour and spice mixture and folded it in. I divided the mixture into the cake tins and baked it on 180C/160C Fan/Gas Mark 4 for 40 minutes until a skewer inserted in the middle came out clean and the sponges were golden brown.
- I removed the cakes from the tins and left them to cool fully on cooling racks.
- To make the cream cheese frosting I beat together 200g butter with 80g honey. Then I added 500g icing sugar and mixed it in. Finally I added 150g cream cheese and ½ tsp freshly grated ginger and mixed in.
- I filled the middle of the cake with a generous layer of the frosting.
- I then covered the whole cake with a thin layer of frosting and put it in the fridge for an hour to set.
- To finish I covered the cake with the rest of the cream cheese frosting.
This cake is full of flavour, the sponge is warm and aromatic and the frosting is fresh and creamy. It’s a fantastic pairing - why not enjoy it with a cup of chai tea with your Veggie magazine subscription?
This is a guest post via the magazine.co.uk blogger network.