I was in the mood for a tea cake one day & wanted to make something with a bit of Scottish flair, so I hit the Internet to search for some inspiration. Happy to say, I found it on a really cool website that has a lot of interesting stories on Scotland & the Kingdom of Fife ~ along with travel info, history, customs & traditions, golf, photos, current events & most importantly for me...recipes! They not only have authentic, traditional recipes (e.g., haggis, scotch broth & tipsy laird), but also have a page devoted to recipes contributed by home cooks (e.g., cup of tea cake, scones & malt loaf ). I love this site ~ armchair travel & food inspirations, all in one place!
|Fresh out of the oven...|
I adapted my recipe for the Scottish Spiced Tea Cake from this recipe for the ~ Cup of Tea Cake ~ a recipe that a reader contributed to the site. It's a wonderful tea cake (that is actually made with, as they say on the other side of the pond, ~ a cuppa tea) & it's become a favorite around here. I make two versions of this tea cake recipe ~ sometimes I make it with grated carrot, so then I call it my Scottish Spiced Carrot Tea Cake & sometimes I make it with just the raisins, that one is my basic Scottish Spiced Tea Cake. I'm sure you could tweak this recipe many ways just by using different dried fruits or with what you have available in your pantry.
|Scottish Spiced Carrot Tea Cake|
I changed the original Scottish recipe a bit ~ cutting down on the margarine, including some applesauce & upping the spices. The flavor is rich with the scent of spices, the cake is moist & sweet with the hint of apples & raisins (& maybe carrots). Since I used applesauce to replace some of the margarine/butter, it cuts down of the fat, too ~ Yes! :) Try eating a slice warm, fresh out of the oven (I just love it when it first comes out of the oven & the edges are just a little crisp) or maybe try a piece toasted the next day. Hmm...I'm feeling a bit peckish & thirsty for a cuppa tea. I think I know what I'll be baking later today. Now I only have to decided if will it be with or without the carrots... :)
|The end slice is my favorite...|
Scottish Spiced Tea Cake ~ aka Cup of Tea Cake
makes a one pound loaf
((** you can turn this into a Scottish Spiced Carrot Tea Cake by adding 1/3 cup grated carrot along with the raisins**))
- 1 cup of strong black tea
- 1/4 cup margarine or butter
- 1/4 cup applesauce
- 1/2 cup raisins (or also adding 1/3 cup grated carrots if making this the carrot version)
- 2 1/3 cups flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 egg, beaten
Preheat oven to 350 degrees & grease a one pound loaf pan & set aside.
(you can use either a glass, metal or aluminum loaf pan ~ depending on the type of loaf pan you choose, the baking time may vary slightly)
|Melting the butter with tea, applesauce, raisins & carrots for the Scottish Spiced Carrot Tea Cake version.|
Melt the margarine in a large pot. At the same time you are melting the margarine, add the tea, applesauce and raisins ((& grated carrots if you are making the Scottish Spiced Carrot Tea Cake)). Once the margarine/fruit mixture is melted, continue to simmer for 1 minute, then allow the mixture to cool completely.
|Sifting all the dry ingredients together...|
While the margarine mixture is melting/doing its thing, sift together all the dry ingredients.
When the margarine mixture has completely cooled, add the remaining ingredients to the pan & mix by hand until the batter is thoroughly combined. (if you mix it all in the one pan you can save washing an extra bowl, but if you like using a mixing bowl instead, have at it :)
Pour batter into the greased loaf pan & cook for approx. one hour or until tester comes out clean & the tea cake is done.
|Scottish Spiced Tea Cake with butter|
Serve with a pot of your favorite tea, we drink the English teas ~ PG Tips or Typhoo Decaf. You can enjoy the tea cake many ways ~ it's perfect served plain, with butter, with cream cheese, or maybe even a little bit of marmalade or jam...but for me, I think it's perfect with just a little bit of butter. Enjoy!
|Scottish Spiced Carrot Tea Cake with cream cheese|