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A sophisticated reinvention of Victoria sponge cake, this tea and cake recipe from Nathan Outlaw makes an impressive summer dessert. There are no difficult aspects to this gastronomic tribute to afternoon tea, but with six components, it may save time to make some of the components, such as the elegant Earl Grey tea ice cream or the vanilla strawberries, ahead of time to get a head start. For more dessert recipes, see our dessert recipes collection.

Method
1.
For the strawberry gel, hull the strawberries and chop them. Put them with the caster sugar in a large stainless steel bowl and set over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure the base of the bowl doesn't touch the water
2.
Cover the bowl with cling film and leave for 1 hour, or until the berries have broken down. (Top up the pan with boiling water, if necessary, while cooking)
3.
Meanwhile, to make the double cream mousse, soak the gelatine in a bowl of cold water until softened
4.
Whisk the egg whites and sugar together in a large bowl until soft peaks form when the whisk is lifted
5.
Heat 50ml of the double cream in a pan. Squeeze out the gelatine and stir it into the hot cream, until dissolved
6.
Scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod, put them in a bowl with the remaining cream and whisk until soft peaks form
7.
Gently fold both the warmed cream and the whipped cream into the egg whites, then spoon onto a large non-stick tray. Chill for 2 hours to set
8.
Return to the strawberry gel. Soak the gelatine leaf in a bowl of cold water until soft. Strain the strawberry mixture through a fine sieve, pushing the fruit with the back of a ladle
9.
Measure out 500ml of this strawberry juice into a clean pan and discard the solids
10.
Stir the agar agar into the strawberry juice and simmer over a medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or until dissolved. Remove from the heat
11.
Squeeze out the gelatine and stir it into the hot strawberry mixture. Once the gelatine has dissolved, cool the strawberry mixture then chill it for 1 hour, or until set
12.
To make the Earl Grey tea ice cream, whisk together the egg yolk & sugar in a large bowl until pale and fluffy
13.
Combine the cream, milk and liquid glucose in a saucepan and bring to the boil, then remove from the heat immediately. Slowly pour the hot cream mixture over the egg yolk and sugar, whisking thoroughly
14.
Add the tea leaves, then set aside to infuse for 30 minutes
15.
Meanwhile, make the tea syrup. Combine the sugar and 50ml of water in a saucepan and heat until the mixture turns caramel
16.
Carefully add another 120ml of water (be careful: it may spit), then simmer for 6-8 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced to a syrup
17.
Add the tea leaves and set aside to infuse for 30 minutes
18.
Strain the ice cream mixture, discarding the tea leaves, then churn in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer the ice cream to a freezerproof box and freeze until serving
19.
Once it has infused, strain the tea syrup through a fine sieve, discard the tea leaves, and set aside the syrup until serving
20.
To make the sponge cake, preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4 and line a 20 x 30cm swiss roll tin with silicone paper. Melt the butter and let it cool slightly
21.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, vanilla seeds and sugar until pale and fluffy
22.
Sift the flour and fold it into the egg mixture, then add the melted butter and mix until smooth
23.
Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown and springy to the touch. Turn out and leave to cool on a wire rack
24.
To make the vanilla strawberries, hull and chop the strawberries and place them in a bowl. Sprinkle over the vanilla sugar and leave to macerate for 30 minutes
25.
Once the jelly has set, place in a blender and blitz into a smooth gel. Spoon into a piping bag
26.
Then take the set double cream mousse, whisk to loosen it slightly, and spoon it into another piping bag. Remove the ice cream from the freezer to soften ready for scooping
27.
Cut the sponge cake into eight equal-sized triangles. Pipe a layer of double cream mousse onto four of the triangles, followed by a layer of strawberry gel
28.
Place the remaining sponge triangles on top to create four sandwiches and transfer them to your serving plates
29.
To decorate, pipe three dots of strawberry gel around each sandwich, then spoon the vanilla strawberries onto the other side of the plates
30.
To finish the tea and cake, place a scoop of Earl Grey ice cream on top of the strawberries. Drizzle the tea syrup around the sponge and the dessert is ready to serve
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Corney & Barrow matching wine

Find out why Corney & Barrow match this Tea and cake recipe with a sweet white wine

Ingredients

Strawberry gel

  • 2kg of strawberries
  • 150g of caster sugar
  • 1 gelatine leaf
  • 6g of agar agar powder

Double cream mousse

Earl Grey tea ice cream

  • 100g of egg yolk
  • 80g of caster sugar
  • 250ml of double cream
  • 250ml of milk
  • 40g of liquid glucose
  • 2 tsp of Earl Grey tea leaves

Tea syrup

  • 170g of caster sugar
  • 2 tsp of Earl Grey tea leaves

Sponge cake

  • 45g of butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 90g of caster sugar
  • 90g of plain flour

Vanilla strawberries

Equipment

  1. Ice cream maker
  2. Blender

Share this Recipe

Nathan Outlaw's dessert recipe is a great take on 'tea and cake'. It features an amazing Earl Grey ice cream recipe paired with sponge cake and strawberries