Look at this thing! As my neighbor put it, “It looks like the grand canyon!”
I made this cake just because I knew it was going to be pretty. And also I was sick of frosting and wanted to try something else…MERINGUE! So fun, amiright?
Part of me is willing to forsake frosting forevermore after having this cake because meringue is such a fun substitute! And if you’re like me, sometimes frosting can get a little too sweet, and this is nice and subtle.
But also, this is the best chocolate cake recipe EVER, and the hint of earl grey I put in there takes it to the next level.
**Side note – Yes, I am using a large kitchen knife as a serving utensil. So you know what to get me for Christmas next year. All I ever wanted was one of those triangle spatula things.
My roommate and brilliant photographer who hates chocolate cake (which I think we can all agree is un-American and possibly also somewhat un-human) even said she liked this cake. So if that doesn’t convince you to make it, I don’t know what will.
I made this for a little dinner party I had with my neighbors, Nick and Ludgi, where Ludgi made some awesome chicken with a funky Brazilian I already forgot the name of. It was awesome.
So without further ado, here’s the recipe!Print
This is the best chocolate cake recipe in the world, with a little hint of earl grey added, topped with a lavender meringue! An earl grey chocolate cake that’ll make you say, “Who needs buttercream?!?”
For the Cake:
- 1/2 cup + 3 Tablespoons flour
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 2 packets of earl grey tea
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup strongly brewed earl grey tea
For the Meringue
- 3 egg whites
- 2/3 cups sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 teaspoons culinary lavender
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease one springform pan, and line the bottom with parchment paper.
First make the meringue. Using a small amount of vinegar or lemon juice, wipe out the inside of the bowl. (We do this to remove any small amount of oil or grease that could remain inside the bowl, as this will negatively affect the meringue). Dry the inside of the bowl. Add all of the meringue ingredients to the bowl and mix them briefly until combined.
Heat about two inches of water in a saucepan until boiling. Place the bowl of meringue ingredients over the saucepan and stir the contents constantly until they are no longer grainy and you cannot feel grains of sugar if you dip your fingers in the mixture and then rub them together.
Strain the mixture to remove the culinary lavender buds. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a standing mixer and beat them on high until stiff peaks form.
To make the cake, begin by heating the buttermilk in a sauce pan until simmering. Add the earl grey tea packets, turn off the stove, cover, and set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the oil, egg, and vanilla. Add the earl grey infused buttermilk.
Combine the wet and dry ingredients. Then stir in the earl grey tea.
Pour the cake batter into the springform pan. Spoon all of the meringue on top of the batter. Use an offset spatula or spread the meringue around, occasionally swooping the knife deep into the batter and pulling it out. The intent is to create a marbled look and lots of peaks.
Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Allow to cool, and then release from the springform pan.
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten
Keywords: cake, chocolate, meringue, earl grey, lavender, dessert, baking, vegetarian