Chocolate Biscuit Tea Cake

Chocolate Biscuit Tea Cake

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Since tomorrow is my birthday, and one of my favorite desserts is CHOCOLATE, I wanted to share this recipe for Chocolate Biscuit Tea Cake that I made for our youngest daughter’s 25th birthday last month.

Serving Chocolate Biscuit Cake at a Tea Party

You might recognize this cake as the Queen’s Chocolate Biscuit Cake. Yes, as in Queen Elizabeth, England’s current reining queen. (Read an interesting article about it HERE.) It is said that she requests this cake for teatime on a regular basis. This might also be called a refrigerator cake or lazy cake.

 

A Note about Ingredients

McVitie's Digestive Biscuits - Cookies - Crackers

What makes this cake so fun is that it is a no-bake cake, and it’s made from pieces of digestive biscuits (slightly sweet buttery cookies). I used McVitie’s Digestive Biscuits that I bought at Walmart, but you might also use vanilla wafers or maybe even animal crackers, although the digestive biscuits are traditional.

Don’t be confused by the word biscuit. This does not mean what American’s call a biscuit that we put butter and jelly on and serve with gravy. England’s definition of “biscuit” means a cookie or cracker.  

I made this cake with a few revisions to the basic recipe. First, I didn’t have yellow syrup, which was listed in many of the recipes I found online. Instead, I used agave syrup. You might also be able to use corn syrup.

Ingredients for this Recipe

Most chocolate biscuit cake recipes were made with biscuits and a chocolate ganache. Sweet and Simple. When I made mine, I added chopped pistachios and dried cherries. This gave the cake a real boost of flavor. I also added in a little Hazelnut Nutella and a splash of brandy.

Plus, my ganache was made from a wonderful dark Belgian chocolate that I purchased at our nearest Aldi store. When you make this cake you’ll want to use the best dark chocolate you can find, but try to keep it under 70% cocoa. Mine was 67% and it worked really well.

As for pans, I used a springform pan, which gave an easy release from the cake and worked really well. I also saw many recipes that used a loaf pan lined with parchment paper, which you could also do with a round cake pan. Now, let’s move on to the recipe!

 

Ingredients for Chocolate Biscuit Tea Cake

  • digestive biscuits (McVitie’s)
  • roasted pistachios
  • dried cherries
  • butter
  • agave syrup
  • large egg
  • Belgian dark chocolate
  • brandy
  • vanilla extract
  • chocolate-hazelnut spread (like Nutella)

Ganache Topping

  • Belgian dark chocolate
  • heavy whipping cream
  • agave syrup
  • mini chocolate chips (for decoration)

 

How to Make this Recipe

To begin, butter the sides and bottom of an 8″ springform pan. Gather your ingredients so that you have everything close at hand on the counter or table.

Shell pistachios and finely chop, using a nut chopper.

With a knife and cutting board, chop the dried cherries. Chop the Belgian dark chocolate into small pieces.

Digestive Biscuits Broken into Pieces

Break the Digestive Biscuits into 1/2-inch pieces and place in a small bowl.

 

Prepare the Tea Cake

Combine Biscuits with Pistachios and Dried Cherries

In a large bowl, combine the broken biscuits with the chopped roasted pistachios nuts and chopped dried cherries. Mix together to combine.

Melting Butter and Agave Syrup

In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the butter and agave syrup. Cook and stir until the butter is melted, but do not bring this to a boil.

Allow to set for 5 minutes, then quickly whisk in the large egg to pasteurize.

Stirring in the Chocolate Pieces, Brandy and Vanilla Extract

Stir in the chopped Belgian chocolate, vanilla extract, and brandy. Stir until smooth. Add in the chocolate hazelnut spread and stir to combine.

Adding Chocolate to the Biscuit Mixture

Pour this chocolate mixture into the bowl of broken biscuits. Using a long-handled spoon, stir all together until coated.

Spooning Cake Mixture into the Springform Pan

Transfer mixture to the prepared springform pan, pressing down until packed. Smooth a rubber spatula over the top until even.

Cover the top with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 6-8 hours. Overnight is better.

 

Prepare the Ganache Topping

The next day, prepare the Ganache Topping. Place the Belgian dark chocolate pieces in a large bowl.

Heat the heavy whipping cream and agave syrup in a small saucepan and stir until the syrup has dissolved and the cream has warmed.

Keep an eye on the cream mixture, as you don’t want it to boil.

Pour the cream over the chocolate pieces and allow to set for 5 minutes. Stir until the chocolate is smooth and glossy. Allow to set at room temperature until it thickens a bit, about 45 minutes.

 

Assemble the Cake

Meanwhile, remove the cake from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature while the ganache cools. After about 30-40 minutes, remove the side from the pan and invert the cake onto a cake stand or tray. Carefully remove the bottom of the pan from the cake.

You may need to ease the bottom cover from the cake with an offset spatula or knife. Simply slide it around the outer edges until the cake releases from the pan.

Pouring the Ganache over the Biscuit Cake

Pour about 1/3 of the ganache over the top of the cake and spread to the edges, allowing it to pour down the sides. Smooth the top and sides with an offset spatula until the cake is completely covered.

Decorate Top of Cake with Miniature Chocolate Chips

Sprinkle with miniature chocolate chips as desired for decoration. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. Upon serving, use a sharp knife to cut 1/4″ slices by pressing down, rather than in a sawing motion.

Serving Chocolate Biscuit Cake at a Tea Party

This cake will serve 20 people. It’s the perfect fancy dessert for your next tea party! You may refrigerate leftovers in a covered container for 3 weeks or more.

See more Cake Recipes Here. Browse Chocolate Recipes Here. View more Tea Party Ideas Here. 

 

Recipe for Chocolate Biscuit Tea Cake

CHOCOLATE BISCUIT TEA CAKE

I made it this Chocolate Biscuit Tea Cake for our youngest daughters 25th birthday, and we loved it! It's an easy no-bake cake to make that's rich and dreamy!
5 from 6 votes
Print Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: English
Keyword: Belgian Dark chocolate, Chopped Pistachios, Dried Cherries, McVities Digestive Biscuits, Tea Party
Prep Time: 27 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Refrigerate - Resting Time: 11 hours 35 minutes
Servings: 20

Equipment

Glass Mixing Bowls
Springform Pan
Offset Spatula
Glass Cake Stand

Ingredients

  • 14 oz digestive biscuits I used McVitie's that I purchased at Walmart
  • 1/2 cup roasted pistachios chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried cherries chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups butter
  • 1/4 cup agave syrup
  • 1 large egg
  • 6 oz dark Belgian chocolate chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Brandy
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup chocolate-hazelnut spread like Nutella

Ganache Topping

  • 4 oz dark Belgian chocolate chopped
  • 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon agave syrup
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips for decoration

Instructions

  • To begin, butter the sides and bottom of an 8" springform pan. Gather your ingredients so that you have everything close at hand on the counter or table.
  • Shell pistachios and finely chop, using a nut chopper.
    With a knife and cutting board, chop the dried cherries. Chop the Belgian dark chocolate into small pieces.

Assemble the Tea Cake

  • In a large bowl, combine the digestive biscuits (broken into 1/2" pieces), the chopped roasted pistachios nuts, and chopped dried cherries. Mix together to combine.
  • In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the butter and agave syrup. Cook and stir until the butter is melted, but do not bring this to a boil.
    Allow to set for 5 minutes, then quickly whisk in the large egg to pasteurize.
  • Stir in the chopped Belgian chocolate, vanilla extract, and brandy. Stir until smooth.
  • Add in the chocolate hazelnut spread and stir until combined.
  • Pour this chocolate mixture into the bowl of broken biscuits. Using a long-handled spoon, stir all together until coated.
  • Transfer mixture to the prepared springform pan, pressing down until packed. Smooth a rubber spatula over the top until even.
  • Cover the top with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 6-8 hours. Overnight is better.

Prepare the Ganache Topping

  • The next day, prepare the Ganache Topping. Place the Belgian chocolate pieces into a large bowl.
  • Heat the heavy whipping cream and agave syrup in a small saucepan and stir until the syrup has dissolved and the cream has warmed. Keep an eye on this, as you do not want it to boil.
  • Pour the cream over the chocolate pieces and allow to set for 5 minutes. Stir until the chocolate is smooth and glossy. Allow to set at room temperature until it thickens a bit, about 45 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, remove the cake from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature while the ganache cools. After about 30-40 minutes, remove the side from the pan and invert the cake onto a cake stand or tray. Carefully remove the bottom of the pan from the cake.
  • Pour about 1/3 of the ganache over the top of the cake and spread to the edges, allowing it to pour down the sides. Smooth the top and sides with an offset spatula until the cake is completely covered.
  • Sprinkle with miniature chocolate chips as desired for decoration. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.
  • Upon serving, use a sharp knife to cut 1/4" slices by pressing down, rather than in a sawing motion. Serves 20.

Notes

*Unless otherwise indicated, all butter used on this recipe site is salted.
**This cake will keep covered in the refrigerator for 3 weeks or more.

Nutrition

Calories: 337kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 228mg | Potassium: 90mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 571IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1mg
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