Skip to main content

The Earl of Chocolate Cake

Making one cake for the man you love is hard. Try making three to celebrate his 40th birthday!

Unlike a normal cake order where the client specifies the flavour, shape, filling and decoration, Mr Di-licious simply said “Surprise me”. Humph....I think that’s worse.

One cake down and the next needed in only a few days, inspiration finally struck one morning in the shower – make him an Earl Grey tea flavoured cake. Brilliant!

My first scan of the web found lots of tea cakes but they were more church picnic than milestone birthday.

It’s a celebration cake and in my world that means a creamy filling and chocolate.

Chocolate and Earl Grey?  Suspend belief and take it from me: it works mate... it does!

Time was short so instead of experimenting, I let my eyes do the walking through Google Images to find a recipe I could use.

I was instantly smitten by a cake by Cultivate Online: The Queen’s Earl Grey Fudge Cake - a chocolate and earl grey tea cake, filled with earl grey flavoured cream cheese frosting, covered in earl grey infused dark chocolate ganache and blinged up with earl grey praline. 

The recipe seemed straight forward and would allow me to make all the elements ahead of time to assemble at my brother in law's house.

I did do a few things a little differently though.
  • I used loose leaf Earl Grey tea for the cake, ganache and cream cheese filling (1 teaspoon per teabag cited in the recipe).
  • I split each cake in two to create a four layer cake.
  • I made a strong tea-flavoured sugar syrup to moisten the cake layers before spreading on the filling.
  • I made a double batch of the ganache – always better to have extra ganache to make covering the cake easier (and give you something to drizzle over ice-cream of dip cupcakes into).

Some comments on the cake:

  • The earl grey flavour is subtle. Not immediately noticeable when you first eat it but then all of a sudden, the taste sneaks into your mouth and it’s quite nice. (I’m personally not a huge Earl Grey fan but loved the extra dimension to the cake, especially the ganache.)
  • Don't add an extra flavour profile. I decided at the last minute to add some fresh orange zest to one of the cakes as a bit of a citrus burst. This dominated the cake a bit (not in a bad way though). If I made it again, I wouldn’t include it.
  • I found the cake a little crumbly. This was exacerbated by splitting the cakes in two. This is also a cake that is best cooked without baking strips - you need a firm edge to the cake to make covering with ganache easier.
  • Make sure to redust your cake with praline just before serving.  The praline will 'melt'and leave little droplets over the top of the cake if left to its own devices for an hour or two. This doesn't affect the taste of the cake.
  • Making dry caramel is easy if you know what you're doing.  Thank you David Lebovitz for your invaluable, entertaining guide!
This cake really does taste as good as it looks.  Olive helped blow out the candles (again!) and as predicted, a lot of good wine was consumed over the course of the weekend.

And now it's time for me to start on cake number three!


Your cake icing is just puurrrfect! I love how smooth you got it! What a delicious sounding flavour too! :)
Di-licious said…
Thanks Lorraine! You should give it a whirl sometime.
Anne said…
Hello Di! Your husband is one lucky man! What a di-lightful flavour combination. I reckon that'd go pretty well with a cup of Earl Gray right about now.

Am looking forward to the next instalment!

Anne @ Domesblissity
Maria said…
Wow, stunning cake!
Tiffany said…
Earl grey and chocolate sounds... well.. MAGICAL!
How would you not feel loved receiving a cake like this. I bet it taste soooooo yummy. - Elizabeth
Oh my! My husband's two favourite things. And he has an upcoming birthday.
Anonymous said…
I must thank you for the efforts you've put in writing this website.
I really hope to see the same high-grade content by you in the future as well.
In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged
me to get my own website now ;)

Also visit my webpage - sbobet

Popular posts from this blog

My sister's wedding cake: Kransekake {Recipe}

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Drive to Byron Bay for my sister's wedding so we could transport the wedding cake I'd made her. A six day break where we spent four days in the car. Insane right?

Did I mention I made a wedding cake?

Not your quintessential tiered, fondant creation mind you.  In a nod to our Norwegian heritage, my sister asked me to make a traditional wedding cake called kransekake.

If you haven’t seen one before, kransekake isn’t actually a cake; it’s a tower of eighteen sweet almond macaroon rings – think baked marzipan – ‘glued’ together with royal icing. 

Instead of cutting the cake, the bride and groom lift the top ring.  The number of rings that stay attached to the top ring is supposed to signify how many children the happy couple will be blessed with. 
The rings are then broken up into pieces (starting from the bottom) and served with coffee. 

The dough is a cinch to make but its the baking that brings many a cook unstuck, or should I stay stuck.…

Norwegian Apple Cake {Recipe}

If you’ve been following my blog you’d know that earlier this week I celebrated Norway’s Constitution Day – hip hip hurrah! 

The Norwegian Kitchen is a collection of traditional and new recipes from each region of Norway, presented by the Association of Norwegian Chefs. 

Choosing just one cake recipe was hard but I decided to recreate a popular cake from my own childhood – apple cake.

When I made the cake I thought three apples was a bit excessive and only used two. Once baked I regretted my decision – whilst still di-licious, the extra apple in the centre of the cake as well as on top would have provided a greater apple flavour and a moister cake. Definitely use two green cooking apples – in Australia we would use Granny Smiths.

I made the cake the day of our afternoon tea so it was still slightly warm when served. The leftover cake was popped into an airtight container and consumed over a week. Kept in the fridge it stays quite fresh. To bring out the aromas, gently reheat a cake …

Spread the love - Lemon Butter {Recipe}

You could be forgiven for thinking that there is a strong lemon theme happening on the blog lately. And you'd be right. 

When you have unlimited access to a ridiculously abundant lemon tree - you don't cook with oranges.
Luckily we're all lemon fans here. 
Can I just say categorically that I love lemon butter. It's tart, it's sweet and it makes the most decadent white bread sandwich. 

It's perfect on scones and pikelets; is a divine filling for cakes and sandwiched biscuits; and unbeatable eaten straight from the spoon.
It's also pretty easy to make provided you're not in a hurry. If you rush it..... well, you're going to end up with lemony scrambled eggs.
Trust me. I've been there. 

I got asked what the difference was between lemon butter and lemon curd. I couldn't find an answer online but according to my CWA Judging notes, lemon curd/cheese is made with milk and cream whereas lemon butter is not.

A good lemon butter should:

have a fresh, delicate …