Hot Toddy Tea Cake

February 13, 2013
3 Ratings
  • Makes one 9" x 5" loaf
Author Notes

I like my tea strong, milky and sweet. Adapted from my XYZ Cake here in the archives, and inspired by the Yorkshire Tea Loaf I saw at Betty's online, this cake is just begging to be dunked. It's moist and buttery, but holds up well to a quick plunge, and then down the hatch it goes, very easily.

Zest your lemon before cutting it up for the hot toddy. —mrslarkin

What You'll Need
  • the hot toddy soak
  • 1 ounce bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 of a whole lemon, juiced
  • 6 ounces boiling water
  • 1 tea bag (Yorkshire Gold is my favorite)
  • 1 cup assorted dried fruits (I use raisins, currants, tart cherries, cranberries)
  • the cake
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt (I use nonfat Greek-style)
  • 1 large whole egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/8 cup reserved soaking liquid
  • 1 1/8 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • grated zest of one whole lemon
  • 4 ounces unsalted butter (1 stick), cut into small chunks, room temperature
  • confectioner's sugar for the icing
  1. the hot toddy soak
  2. Put the kettle on.
  3. Combine all ingredients, except fruit, in a large measuring cup. Let tea steep for 5 minutes. Remove tea bag and add fruit. Cover with plastic wrap. Let fruit plump for an hour or so.
  4. Drain fruit and set aside, reserving liquid for the cake and the icing.
  1. the cake
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 5 loaf pan and line it with a piece of parchment, with the some parchment overhang. This will help you remove the cake from the pan later.
  3. Stir together the yogurt, eggs and soaking liquid. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and lemon zest.
  5. Add butter and half of the yogurt/egg mixture. Mix on low until moistened. Increase to medium for one minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  6. Add half of the remaining yogurt/egg mixture and beat for 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the rest of the yogurt/egg mixture. Scrape.
  7. Gently fold in the strained fruit.
  8. Spread the batter into the loaf pan. Bake for about 50 minutes, or until the top is nicely golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean. Let cool slightly, and remove from pan.
  9. FOR THE ICING: Place remaining soaking liquid in a small bowl. Stir in the confectioner's sugar by the spoonful, until you reach a smooth, pourable consistency. If you need more liquid, supplement with more bourbon or lemon juice, or both.
  10. Drizzle the icing on top of the cake. Invite some friends for afternoon tea.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • nannydeb
  • Bevi
  • EmilyC
  • lapadia
  • hardlikearmour

12 Reviews

nannydeb March 6, 2013
I baked this for an office breakfast this morning (yes, I took a cake with bourbon in it to work...) and it's wonderful! Slightly lemony with just a hint of bourbon. I'm going back for seconds if there's any left! All ovens are different, I baked it for an hour and tented foil over top. I'll make this again for out of town guests this weekend!
mrslarkin March 6, 2013
That's great to hear nannydeb! Thanks for letting me know. Nothing wrong with bourbon at work, imho. I baked one last week in a slightly smaller loaf pan, and I think it took like 65 minutes.

I made one without raisins this morning, for a library seminar. I like it way better with raisins! I sprinkled granulated sugar over the top, because I was curious what would happen, and it made a really nice crispy crust.
Bevi February 20, 2013
All my favorite ingredients!
mrslarkin February 20, 2013
Thanks, Bevi. I'm baking another one as I type. Swing by if you're passing through.
EmilyC February 19, 2013
This looks and sounds ridiculously good.
mrslarkin February 19, 2013
Thank you, Em! Making another one tomorrow, as this one disappeared rather quickly. ;)
lapadia February 18, 2013
Your tea cake looks and sounds to die for, mrsL!
mrslarkin February 18, 2013
thanks, lapadia!
hardlikearmour February 13, 2013
What a delicious tea cake! ?
mrslarkin February 13, 2013
Thank you kindly, hla!
AntoniaJames February 13, 2013
I could use a thick slice of that right about now, with a nice cuppa tea spiked with some of that soaking liquid. (Well, maybe after the conference call I need to jump on in a few minutes . . . ) Best answer to a blizzard, ever. You totally rock, Mrs L! ;o)
mrslarkin February 13, 2013
Thanks! Do let me know if you try it, AJ. Soak your fruit BEFORE the conference call and you can have cake this afternoon. ;)