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Polish Tea Cake Recipe – Ciasto Herbaciane

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Polish tea cake is ready to serve.

Not many people realize that in Poland, tea is as popular as beer, vodka or kompot. Tea is enjoyed throughout the day and there are many versions of Polish tea available in the market. 

This particular Polish tea cake recipe uses tea in the recipe itself. The tea gives the cake a distinct flavor. The trick to making this cake is to ensure that you brew a strong cup of tea. Too light a brew and the flavor will not disperse through the entire cake.

The History Of Tea In Poland

Herbal tea in a cup next to leaves.
Herbal tea has many health benefits!

The tea plant is not native to the European continent. It was first brought to Europe from Japan by the Dutch East India company in 1609. While many of the European countries adopted the beverage quickly, it was not popular in Poland till Marie Louise, wife of King Jan Kazimierz, introduced it to the court in the 17th century. 

Many people like Stanislaw Trembecki and Reverend Kazimierz Kluk still continued to believe that tea was dangerous and harmful to health  even after this. In the 18th century, many of the beliefs that surrounded tea were overruled. People began to drink it for its perceived health benefits and by the second half of the century, tea plantations began to spring up across the country. Eventually tea overtook coffee in popularity.

Today Poles drink tea irrespective of the time of the day. There are various different types of Polish tea and they are marketed by many different brands.

Polish Tea Cake Recipe – Ciasto Herbaciane

Make The Dough

Part I – Preheat The oven To 355°F

Always preheat the oven before you start making a cake. This will help you put the cake into the oven as soon as you are done mixing the dough which is the ideal way to do it. If you leave the dough aside and wait for the oven to heat, a lot of the air incorporated in the dough will escape and your cake will become thick and flat.

Part II – Separate The Egg Yolks And White

For this recipe, you will need 8 eggs. Separate the egg yolks and the egg whites gently.

Part III –  Beat The Egg Yolks With Sugar

Add 1 cup of sugar to the egg yolks and beat them. The egg yolks will change from yellow to a whitish color. This is when you know that the egg yolk is ready. It typically takes around 5 minutes for this to happen.

Part IV – Add Honey And Plum Butter

Add ½ cup of honey and ½ cup of plum butter, and 1 cup of olive oil to the mixture. Continue to beat the dough.

Add honey and plum butter
Add honey and plum butter

Part V – Add Flour And Tea

Add in one cup of strong tea and mix. Next add in 4 cups of all purpose flour. Make sure to add in a little flour at a time and mix. You can also set your mixer at a low speed and continue to add the flour in.

Add in a cup of strong tea.
Add in a cup of strong tea.

Part VI – In A Separate Bowl Beat The Egg Whites

Use a separate bowl for this step. Add in the egg whites and a pinch of salt. Whip them until the egg whites form stiff peaks. You can check this by turning the whisk upside down. If the egg white at the top of the whisk remains pointed upward (stiff) then the egg whites are ready.

Part VII – Fold The Egg White Into The Remaining Dough

This step is crucial. Gently add the egg white into the remaining dough. Move the spoon gently and fold it in. If you do this vigorously, the air in the egg white will dissipate and you will not get a nice spongy texture.

Part VIII – Place The Dough In A 8” Pan

Line an 8” baking pan with parchment paper. This will prevent the cake from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven and set it aside to cool.

Make The Pudding Layer

This recipe requires 2 pudding boxes. Make the pudding following the instructions on the package. Use 1 cup less milk than in the instruction to make the pudding thicker.

Make The Chocolate Glaze

Part I – Melt The Butter With Sugar And Cocoa

In a pot add in 2 sticks of butter, 6 tbsps. of cocoa and 6 tbsps. of sugar. Melt it together and stir constantly. Turn off the heat.

Part II – Add Raw Egg

Now add in 1 raw egg. Make sure to whisk the mixture constantly in order to prevent lumps from forming. To do this you can either use a fork or a whisk.

Assemble The Cake

Part I – Cut The Cake Into 3 Pieces Horizontally

Cut the cake horizontally
Cut the cake horizontally.

Part II – Assemble The Cake

The Polish tea cake is a layered cake. In order to get the requisite layering, make sure to follow this order.

  • Tea cake
  • Pudding layer
  • Tea cake
  • Plum butter
  • Tea cake
  • Chocolate glaze
Add the pudding layer for the Polish tea cake
Add the pudding layer for the Polish tea cake.
Add the chocolate glaze for the Polish tea cake.
Add the chocolate glaze for the Polish tea cake.
Polish tea cake is ready to serve.
Polish tea cake is ready to serve.

FAQ About The Polish Tea Cake Recipe

Can The Plum Butter Be Substituted In This Recipe?

The plum butter gives the Polish tea cake a lovely flavor. If you do not have plum butter at home, this can easily be substituted with a thick fruity jam. Note that the consistency of the jam is important in this recipe. A jam that is more liquid than thick will change the consistency of the dough and the cake will not bake as well.

Which Brand Of Polish Tea Should I Use?

As mentioned before, the tea brewed for this cake needs to be strong. One of the best brands for a really strong cup of tea is Babcia Jagoda. Some people actually use one bag to make two cups of tea. Yes! It is that strong!

What Are Some Other Easy-To-Make Polish Cakes?

The Poles love their cakes and it isn’t a wonder that baking at home is very popular. There is nothing quite like a piece of hot steaming cake with a cup of tea or coffee. Here are some popular and easy to make cake recipes that you can try.

Yield: 15 pieces

Polish Tea Cake Recipe - Ciasto Herbaciane

Polish tea cake is ready to serve.

The Polish tea cake recipe utilizes the flavors of a Polish tea to create a delicious multilayer cake that you can't stop eating.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours

Ingredients

Cake Dough

  • 1 cup of olive oil
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 cup of strong tea
  • ½ cup of honey
  • ½ cup of plum butter or any thick jam
  • 4 cups (480g) of all-purpose flour
  • 8 eggs
  • 2 tsps of baking soda

Chocolate Glaze

  • 2 sticks (225g) of butter
  • 6 tbsps of cocoa
  • 6 tbsps of sugar
  • 1 egg

Others

  • 2 packages of cocoa pudding mix
  • 3-4 cups of milk
  • 3-4 tbsps of sugar
  • 1 small jar of plum butter or thick jam

Instructions

Make The Tea Dough

  1. Preheat the oven to 356°F.
  2. Separate egg yolks from egg whites.
  3. Beat egg yolks with sugar until they change color to whitish (for about 5 minutes).
  4. Add honey, plum butter, olive oil, and beat again.
  5. Add flour and tea, and beat again.
  6. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff.
  7. Carefully add egg white foam to the remaining dough. Do it using a spoon, mix slowly, stirring in one direction only.
  8. Place the dough in the 8'' round pan lined with parchment paper, and bake for 35-40 minutes. Allow to cool.

Make The Pudding Layer

  1. Make the pudding following the instruction on the package. Use 1 cup less milk than in the instruction to make the pudding thicker.

Make The Chocolate Glaze

  1. In a pot, melt butter with sugar and cocoa. Turn off the heat.
  2. Add raw egg, whisking all the time to make sure there are no lumps. Do it using a fork or a whisk.

Assemble The Cake

  1. Cut the cake into 3 pieces (horizontally).
  2. Assemble the cake in the following order:
  • tea cake
  • pudding layer
  • tea cake
  • plum butter
  • tea cake
  • chocolate glaze

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

15

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 609Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 135mgSodium: 446mgCarbohydrates: 83gFiber: 2gSugar: 54gProtein: 14g

These data are indicative and calculated by Nutritionix

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