Tea Cakes

As you lovely people may know, the hubby and I moved house a few months ago and in the move I discovered a brand new silicone tea cake mould, still with the packaging on and everything! So, to avoid risking giving my husband further ammunition in his “you have too much baking stuff” conversation I set about putting the mould to use!

I used a recipe from the GBBO “How to Turn Everyday Bakes into Showstoppers” book, but put a little twist in to liven it up a bit. I was a bit apprehensive about this bake (who could forget the stressful episode in Series 3 when the bakers attempted chocolate teacakes on one of the hottest days of the year?!) but I was pleasantly surprised about how straightforward the recipe was. You just need to be prepared to put in a bit of time as there are several steps that require a bit of waiting whilst chocolate sets etc.

I have set out the recipe and method below and put in my hints and tips based on my experience of baking these lovely little teacakes.

Ingredients

For the shells:
400g dark chocolate (*see tip below*)

*Tip*
I used 85% cocoa solids which worked well with the sweetness of the marshmallow, however I found it slightly too bitter for my personal taste and so next time I would probably use either plain chocolate or a mix of dark and milk chocolate.

For the biscuit base:
50g plain wholemeal flour
50g plain flour
good pinch of salt
½ tsp baking powder
25g caster sugar
25g unsalted butter, at room temperature (diced)
1 tbsp milk

For the marshmallow:
3 free-range egg whites, at room temperature
150g caster sugar
2 tbsp golden syrup
½ tsp salt
½ seeds scraped from 1 vanilla pod

*Tip*
I added the zest of one large orange to the marshmallow mix to give it a bit of extra zing!

Equipment:
1 x 7.5cm plain round cutter
1 baking sheet, slightly greased
6 hole (7.5cm) silicone semi dome chocolate mould
Baking paper
2 x disposable piping bags

*Tip*
I found that using the same size cutter as the chocolate mould meant that the biscuits were slightly too large to fit comfortably on the base of the teacakes. I would suggest either re-cutting the biscuits as they come out of the oven or using a slightly smaller cutter than your mould.

Method:
1. Break up 300g of the chocolate and melt it. Leave to cool and firm up slightly

*Tip*
It’s a good idea to transfer the chocolate to a cold bowl, as leaving it in the bowl you used to melt the chocolate will slow down the cooling process.

2. Meanwhile, make the biscuits. Combine the flours, salt, baking powder and sugar in a mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub in until the mixture resembles fine crumbs, then add the milk and work the mixture until the dough comes together to make a smooth ball of dough.

*Tip*
If the dough is still a bit dry, just add a little bit more milk until it comes together.

3. Turn out onto a lightly floured worktop and roll out to about 5mm thick. Using the round cutter, cut out 6 discs, re-rolling the trimmings if necessary. Arrange slightly apart on the prepared baking sheet and prick each biscuit a couple of times with a fork. Chill for 10-15 minutes while you preheat the oven to 160°C/325°F/gas 3.

4. Bake the biscuits for 10-12 minutes until firm and just starting to colour around the edges – don’t let them get too dark or they will taste bitter. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

5. Wipe out the semi-dome mould with kitchen paper, then pour about 1 tablespoon of chocolate in each hole. Spread with the back of the spoon, and tip and swirl for several minutes, so the holes are completely covered (be careful when swirling one hole that the chocolate doesn’t pour out of the other holes!) – the domes need enough chocolate to be sturdy but should be thin enough to bite through easily. Take your time doing this, to allow the chocolate to thicken up so it doesn’t settle in the base of the holes. Leave to set (but not in the fridge).

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*Tip*
I spread the chocolate out and then left it for a few minutes next to an open window to harden up slightly and then used a spoon to re-spread the chocolate that had settled back into the base.

6. Dip the cooled biscuits in the remaining melted chocolate to cover completely and evenly (or brush chocolate over them), then place them uneven side down on a sheet of baking paper. Leave to set.

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7. To make the marshmallow, put all of the ingredients into a large heatproof mixing bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk with a hand-held electric mixer on full power for 6-8 minutes until you have a bowl of thick, glossy, silky-smooth and very stiff meringue (rather like Italian Meringue). It needs to be stiff enough to pipe. Remove the bowl from the heat and whisk for a few more minutes until the meringue has cooled. Leave it until it is completely cold, then spoon into one of the piping bags.

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*Tip*
When filling piping bags, to avoid mess, I put my piping bags into a clean glass and fold down the edges then fill them and roll the edges back up.

8. Melt the remaining 100g chocolate as before. Spoon into the other piping bag and turn up the tip so the chocolate doesn’t set hard; stand it in a glass until it has cooled and firmed up to piping consistency.

9. To assemble the teacakes, peel the biscuits off the paper and lay them, flat side down, on a clean sheet of baking paper. Snip the end off the piping bag containing the marshmallow to make a 2cm opening, then pipe the marshmallow into each chocolate dome to fill it level with the rim.

*Tip*
I tried “swirling” the marshmallow round a bit like I do when icing cupcakes and also simply holding the piping bag in the bottom of the dome and squeezing the bag and found that the latter was the most effective way of filling the domes.

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10. Snip off a 2cm opening from the piping bag containing the chocolate, then carefully pipe some chocolate on the marshmallow and a ring of chocolate around the edge of each biscuit. Swiftly place a biscuit on each marshmallow-filled dome. Smooth the join with a knife then leave to set until sealed together.

*Tip*
As I said above, my biscuits were a bit too big and so I had to slightly peel back the silicone mould and “glue” the base to the dome with a lot of melted chocolate.

11. Very carefully remove the chocolate domes from the mould by turning the mould upside down and gently popping out the domes (as though you are removing fragile ice cubes from a tray). Store in an airtight container in a cool place, but not the fridge, and eat within 2 days.

*Tip*
I didn’t turn the moulds upside down but “peeled” them away from the top edge of the dome first and then gently pushed up from the bottom at the same time as peeling the mould away to get the domes out.

I thoroughly enjoyed making these teacakes (and eating them)! Let me know if you have tried this recipe or something similar and, if so, how you got on? I’m thinking about another recipe which would use white chocolate and raspberries. What other combinations do you think would work?

Happy Baking!

Katherine

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Published by

Katherine Wagg

I'm Katherine and I love to bake! Cakes are my favourite but I love a challenge and trying new things. I hope you enjoy my blog. Happy Baking!

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