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French Breakfast Tea Cakes

  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • 30 mins
  • Total Time:
  • 1 hour(s)
  • 10 mins

These little cakes are inspired by David Lebovitz's Bay Leaf Pound Cake, made with bay leaf-steeped butter. Here instead, we infuse the butter with tea, giving the cakes a subtle malty aroma that pairs beautifully with the slightly bitter notes of the candied orange peel. These delectable treats get a second dose of tea in a drizzle of French Breakfast glaze. 

Makes 12 tea cakes


Tea-Infused Butter:



Preheat the oven to 350°F, and butter or grease a 12-count muffin tin.

For the tea-infused butter: Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the loose tea and reduce the heat to low. Simmer about 10 minutes. (The longer the butter simmers, the more pronounced the tea flavor will be in the cakes.) Strain the tea butter into a small bowl, gently pressing on the tea leaves to extract all the butter. (Don’t worry if some of the butter has been absorbed by the tea; the end result should be about 6 or 7 tablespoons of tea butter.) Set aside.

For the cakes: Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sour cream, vanilla extract and melted tea butter. Gently fold the egg mixture into the dry ingredients, mixing only until the batter is smooth. Fold in the orange peel cubes. Fill each greased muffin tin about halfway full with batter. Bake 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cake comes out clean. Cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then gently remove the cakes from the tins and let them cool completely on a wire rack.

For the tea glaze: In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, brewed tea and orange zest until smooth.

To assemble: Brush glaze over the cooled tea cakes. Garnish each cake with a few cubes of candied orange peel.