Happy Birthday Earl Grey!

Today we thought we’d celebrate the 253rd birthday of Earl Grey, the man who brought us the eponymous tea, and eighth Great Grandfather of The Hon Evelyn Boscawen, the owner of the Tregothnan Estate.

Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey, was born on the 13th of March 1764 and was Britain’s Prime Minister from 22 November 1830 to 16 July 1834 and author of the Reform Bill of 1832. He reputedly received a gift, probably a diplomatic perquisite, of tea flavoured with bergamot oil – the delicious tea which has since borne his name.

Ultimately, this Tregothnan office celebration was just a fantastic excuse to try out one of our new recipes – Lemon Curd and Earl Grey Cake. So Happy Birthday Earl Grey! We hope your legacy for your wondrous tea will live on for many more hundreds of years to come…

INGREDIENTS:

EARL GREY CAKE

  • 3 Duck Eggs or 5 Chicken Eggs
  • 250g Self Raising Flour
  • 250g Unsalted Butter
  • 250g Caster Sugar
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp loose Tregothnan Earl Grey tea leaves
  • 2 tbsp Lemon Juice and Zest of lemon
  • 1 tsp Vanilla

EARL GREY SYRUP

  • 1 Cup of Water
  • 1 Tregothnan Earl Grey Tea Bag
  • 1 cup of Caster Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla

ICING

  • 100g Cream Cheese
  • 50g Lemon Curd
  • 50g Icing Sugar

METHOD

  1. Preheat your oven to 160˚C and line the base of two round tins with baking parchment, greasing with a little butter or oil. Cream the butter and sugar together with a whisk for 3 minutes until light and fluffy. Then add the eggs and vanilla whisking gradually together. Finish with Lemon zest and juice. Sift in the flour and baking powder from a height to get in extra air.
  2. Fold in the Earl Grey tea (crush it in a pestle and mortar first to keep it fine, then fold everything in until a smooth cake batter consistency.
  3. Divide the batter into your two tins and smooth over. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes and cool in the tin.
  4. Whilst the cakes are cooling make a simple Earl Grey syrup by boiling the water tea and sugar until it reduces. Then add the vanilla and allow to cool. Poke holes in the cake and drizzle your Earl Grey Syrup into them.
  5. Make your Lemon Curd icing by sifting icing sugar into your cream cheese and folding in the lemon curd. Layer your cake with lemon curd icing and garnish with edible flowers. Serve a generous slice with a cup of Earl Grey…