Whenever I start to feel the winter blues, one simple thing I like to do is to add more citrus to my cooking and baking – somehow, the fresh flavors and bright colors help to bring a little spring cheer before the weather begins to turn. Sometimes I go all out, as in the case of my lemon cupcakes with lemon curd filling and lemon buttercream icing – but other times I like to keep it simple, especially if I can use something I already have on hand, e.g. a jar of delicious homemade marmalade. Even though it’s marmalade season right now and I’ve been canning up a few of my favorites, it always happens that I have a jar or two left from the previous year, giving me the perfect excuse to pop it open and enjoy it as we wait for the snow to melt. Since orange and lemon especially pair very well with Earl Grey tea, I whipped up these little tea cakes, which I enjoyed with tea and coffee alike. I baked them in mini loaf pans, but you can use one large loaf pan, or a cupcake tin if you prefer for a perfect winter morning pick-me-up. Have a wonderful weekend, and stay warm!
- 5 ounces of your favorite marmalade (I used apple ginger orange), divided
- 1 Earl Grey tea bag
- 1/2 cup + 3 Tbsp butter, softened
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups self-raising flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
Soak the tea bag in 1/2 cup boiling hot water for 15 minutes. Let cool. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray three mini loaf tins with cooking spray (mine were about the size of these pans). Scoop out 3 tablespoons of the marmalade to use for the topping later, and set it aside in a small bowl.
In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter and sugar. Add in the rest of the marmalade and the eggs. Remove the tea bag from the water, and mix in the brewed tea. Cut open the tea bag and dump in about half of the wet tea leaves as well. Gradually beat in the flour, baking powder, and spices. Beat just until smooth.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf tins and bake 45-50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Check the cakes while baking to make sure they aren’t browning too much – if so, cover with a piece of aluminum foil.
Let the cakes sit in the pan 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool. Warm up the reserved marmalade, adding water if necessary to spread over the top of the cakes while they are still warm.