Tea Cake

We all like tea at the HBC Bakery - and by tea we mean real hot black tea. Drinking tea becomes much more enjoyable when this ancient noble beverage is accompanied by food, be it a sandwich, a cookie, or a piece of cake. Everything is better with tea! Of course, our cakes can be consumed with coffee, lemonade, milk, you name it, but we have been eating these cakes (and we eat them quite a lot!) mostly with tea. So Tea Cake turns out to be a perfect name. This cake is also Russian because my wife, eldest daughter and I were all born in Russia, where we have been enjoying breads and cakes since our earliest childhood. The taste of those products did not evaporate with time, but is actually as fresh and bright as it used to be back in the old days. Childhood memories are known to be the strongest and stay with us forever. In fact, our "gastronomical selves" come directly from a childhood kitchen, oftentimes defining our preferences in a restaurant without even knowing it.

There is a certain similarity between Tea Cakes, pound cakes and fruitcakes, but the difference is much more pronounced. Fruitcake is made with candied fruit, nuts and spices, and is often soaked or brushed with spirits. It is a festive cake, served in celebration of weddings and Christmas. Pound cake received its name from its recipe - it is made with a pound of each of four ingredients (flour, butter, eggs and sugar). Technically, any cake made with an equal ratio of these products can be called a pound cake. It is also very uncommon to use any dried fruits in this cake. Tea cake, unlike fruitcake, is not festive, it can be eaten any day all year around, it does not have nuts or candied fruits, and it is never soaked in alcohol. It is also quite different from a pound cake: the ratio of ingredients is very far from being equal (there is much less butter and more flour in it) and its signature feature is dried fruit.

Russian Tea Cakes are commonly made with raisins. As an option, we also offer tea cakes with cranberries.