Tea Party Cake Main Photo

I will not claim to have created this recipe from scratch!  I have adapted it from someone else’s inspiration, and given it a uniqueness in my own theme of simple, healthy and involving tea.

I have used loose leaf tea to create this recipe, but the original recipe I adapted my creation from used tea bags – and for convenience, this might be a great option for some.  It might also be a great idea if you have some slightly older tea bags that are a bit past their use-by date and may not be the freshest around.  Because heaven forbid we should throw out any tea!

I chose to roast the pumpkin for the main ingredient, rather than boil and mash pumpkin.  I think that gives it a fuller, more delicious flavor and I don’t like mashing (or grating) because I’m a bit lazy that way :-).

There are some notes provided on the type of pumpkin to use.

So without any further embellishment, here are the ingredients :


1 cup (250ml or 8.5 fl oz) boiling water

4 measures of loose leaf tea (or 4 tea bags).  See Note 1.

125 g (or 4.5oz) of Coconut Oil.  See Note 2.

1 cup (250 g or 9 oz) of fine sugar

1 tablespoon of treacle. See Note 3.

500g (or 18 oz) of mixed dried fruit (any combination is fine – even just straight sultanas)

1 cup (or so) of roasted pumpkin, chopped up in small pieces. See Note 4.

2 eggs, lightly beaten.  See Note 5.

1 cup (150 g or 5 oz) plain flour.  See Note 6.

1 cup (150 g or 5 oz) self raising flour

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Notes on ingredients :

  1. I have used a rich, everyday drinking black tea – a premium loose leaf tea. I’m keen to try an Earl Grey next and there is also the option to do a second steeping of loose tealeaves from a brewed pot of Lapsang Souchong, or something equally as rich and flavorful.
  2. Butter could be used, but personally I believe animal fat should be avoided.
  3. If you are Australian, use Golden Syrup! Molasses will also work.  As you will see, there really is no need for the sugar, with the amount of dried fruit and treacle used!  Hence it’s exclusion in my next version of this recipe.
  4. In Australia our pumpkin is usually Butternut, Kent, Queensland Blue or Jap varieties. These are a very ‘hard’ pumpkin for roasting or mashing.  They are different from the pumpkin or squash used in the United States for carving Halloween Jack-O-Lanterns.  If you can’t source anything like the variety I’ve described, then canned pumpkin will probably do the same thing!  If I can find some in my local store I’ll try it to be sure!
  5. Hens kept in cages or on ‘free range’ farms live horrible lives. If you can’t keep your own chickens for eggs, find the best possible source of ‘happy hen’ eggs you possibly can 🙂
  6. You can sift the flour if you like. But who has time for sifting when there’s cake to be made and eaten!

Easy to Slice Afternoon Tea Cake


As I said, this recipe is really simple and doesn’t need to be treated gently.  Get into it!

Step 1 :

Pour the boiling water onto the tea (or tea bags) and allow to steep until cooled.  It’s fine if it goes cold.  Squeeze the water out of the tea (bags) and dispose of the tea (bags) or use it in your compost.

Step 2 :

Cut the pumpkin into roasting sized pieces and remove the skin.  Roast until soft and slightly browned.  Avoid burning the edges, like I normally do.  Also allow to cool.

Step 3 :

Preheat the oven to 180 Degrees Celcius (or 356 Degrees Farenheit).  Prepare a tin for baking.  I like to use a square tin lined with baking paper.  The square shape of the finished cake allows me to cut it into about 16 lunchbox snack-sized  slices!  I use a tin of approximately 20cm square.

Step 4 :

Put the brewed tea into a saucepan with the Coconut Oil, Sugar, Treacle and Fruit and bring gently to the boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer very gently for 5-10 minutes.  Remove from the heat and leave to cool.  I recommend doing this step in a Thermomix if you have one.

Step 5 :

Add the pumpkin, eggs, flour, cinnamon and bicarb and mix well.  Pour into the prepared tin.


Bake for 30 minutes on 180 Degrees Celcius ( 356 Degrees Farenheit) and then reduce the heat to 160 Degrees Celcius (or 320 Degrees Farenheit).

Cook for a further 1-1.5 hours, until cooked when tested with a skewer.

Cool in the tin and then turn out to cool on a rack.


The cake should keep for a week in an air tight container and also freezes well.

Afternoon Tea Cake

Did you try this recipe?  What did you find?  Do let me know in the comments below!