Tea cake – a recipe

Teabagging is a slang term for the act of a man placing his scrotum in the mouth or on or around the face (including the top of the head) of another person, often in a repeated in-and-out motion, resembling dipping a tea bag into a cup of tea. – Wikipedia

Teabagging Photography Libby Bulloff

Tea cake

This is a subtly-flavoured, tender-crumbed sponge cake. It is quick to make and is suitable for dairy-free diets, too. The acid in the tea helps to ensure the delicate texture. We used a tea called Notting Hill, made by London-based tea company YumChaa. It’s a black tea scented with apricot, strawberry, marigold flowers and cornflowers. To pick up the apricot flavour, we used apricot jam as the cake’s filling. If you don’t have, or don’t fancy, anything quite so exotic, try using a scented, light black tea – Lady Grey would be ideal – then use lemon curd to sandwich the layers together.


  • 2 tspn scented black tea
  • 75ml (2.5 fl oz) water
  • 3 eggs
  • 125g (4 oz) caster sugar
  • 75ml (2.5 fl oz) flavourless oil (for example, sunflower)
  • 175g (6 oz) self-raising flour
  • 2 tbsp jam


  1. Begin by brewing 75ml (2.5 fl oz) of tea and then allowing it to cool.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius (350 degrees fahrenheit, gas mark 4) and grease two 20 cm (8 inch) cake pans.
  3. Whisk the eggs, preferably with an electric mixer, until they are light and fluffy, then whisk in the sugar.
  4. When the tea has cooled, whisk in the oil. It should form an emulsion and resemble salad dressing.
  5. Fold half the flour into the egg, followed by half of the tea mixture; repeat and ensure that everything is mixed thoroughly. Don’t be too heavy-handed with it – air bubbles in the mix make the cake light.
  6. Divide the mixture between the two cake pans and place in the centre of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes. When the cakes are cooked an inserted skewer will come out clean.
  7. Allow the cakes to cool before sandwiching together with jam and serving with tea of your choice.

Recipe Daniella Bowker and Catherine Currie
Photograph Libby Bulloff
Model Maxx Sundquist

This recipe appeared in Filament Magazine Issue 4. Unfortunately that issue is now sold out, but you can still grab our latest issue.

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