Velvet Jasmines

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Tea Time Recipes

Scones, Devonshire Cream,
Petit Fours & Tea Sandwiches

What is "High Tea" without freshly made scones, Devonshire cream, petit fours and a variety of dainty sandwiches served with the tea of your choice.  Here are some easy to  make recipes for your own TEA PARTY.  

BASIC SCONE RECIPE

Make this your own by adding dried fruit, nuts, etc.

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 5 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Cut in butter. Mix the egg and milk in another bowl, and stir into flour mixture until moistened. 
  • Knead dough briefly then roll it out 1/2 inch thick. Cut into wedges, and place on a lightly greased baking sheet.
  • Bake 15 minutes at 400 degrees or until golden brown. Makes 8.


Easy to Make DEVONSHIRE CLOTTED CREAM

Devonshire clotted cream is thick cream that usually accompanies scones and fruit, with its origins traced to Devon, England.  Short of ordering it straight from Devon, here is a clotted cream "mock" recipe that is just as good as the real thing. 

  • 1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese (bring to room temperature)
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  1. Mix cream cheese, sugar and salt.  Add cream and beat until stiff peaks form. Chill.


PETIT FOURS

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1 egg
  • 1 3/4 cups cake flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond flavoring

Cream butter and sugar until smooth.  Beat together 5 egg yolks and 1 egg, and add to creamed butter and sugar.  Beat together until smooth. 

Mix and sift together cake flour, baking powder and salt. Add alternately to the first mixture with the milk.  Add almond flavoring and mix well. 

Bake in greased 13 x 9x 2 inch pan for 25-30 minutes. 

Turn out and cool on cake rack.  Trim crust from top of cake but leave bottom crust on.  Cut cake into desired shapes (circles, squaresl about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter.  Frost with Petit Fours frosting. 

PETIT FOURS FROSTING

  • 1 pound confectioner's sugar
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 2 cups light cream
  • 2 teaspoons almond flavoring

Add melted butter and light cream to the sugar.  Add flavoring.  Cook mixture in a  double boiler until shiny.  Dip each petit four quickly into the warm frosting by holding upside down with a fork coating the top and sides.  Dry on a wire rack.  When dry, trim off excess frosting from base.  Decorate with fresh flowers, colored sugar, candied violets, etc.


TEA SANDWICH RECIPES

Use a variety of breads for color.... wheat, white, pumpernickel, rye, etc. Trim off all crust.  Put the filling in the sandwich first, before trimming the crust on the bread so it will be neater.  Slice into two to four triangles, or into three rectangles, etc.  Remember, they have to be bite size. To prevent the sandwich from getting soggy, spread softened unsalted butter on the bread before putting in the filling.

Cucumber Cream Cheese Filling

  •  English or seedless cucumber, peeled and very thinly sliced
  • 8 oz  cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup coarsely-chopped watercress leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup alfalfa sprouts

Peeled, or unpeeled (your preference) place cucumber slices between layers of paper towels to remove excess moisture.

In a small bowl, combine cream cheese and watercress; spread on one side of each slice of bread.

Lay cucumber slices on top and sprinkle with salt. Cover each with 1 tablespoon alfalfa sprouts and top with the remaining slices of bread, buttered side down. Cut into 1/2 or 1/4 triangles.  

MODIFY: Another recipe calls for  using chopped mint leaves in place of the watercress

Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese Filling

  • 8oz cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon fresh dill, chopped
  • squeeze of lemon juice
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • thin slices of smoked salmon,
  • Beat together the cream cheese, dill lemon juice, salt & freshly milled black pepper.
  • Spread the cream cheese fairly thinly over one side of each slice of bread.
  • Lay a slice of smoked salmon over the top of the cream cheese on half of the bread slices. Season with freshly milled black pepper.
  • Lay a second slice of bread over the smoked salmon, cream cheese downwards and press lightly.
  • Trim the crusts off each sandwich. Now cut them into either 3 rectangles, 4 triangles, 4 squares or 4 octagonals (squares with the corners trimmed off).


Apricot Jam Rum Sandwich

  • 2 lbs cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup apricot jam
  • Rum to taste
  • Cream the cheese until soft.  Add jam and rum and mix well. 


Pineapple Cream Cheese Sandwich

  • 2 pounds cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup crushed pineapple, well drained

Cream cheese until soft.  Add pineapple and mix well. 


Cherry Pecan Orange Rind Pinwheel Sandwich

  • 1 cup maraschino cherries, chopped
  • 1 cup pecans, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons orange rind, chopped
  • 1/2 cup currants or raisins, chopped
  • 2 lbs cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 tsp Curacao or Cointreau

Mix all ingredients together, and spread generously on bread. Roll bread until a pinwheel is formed. Cover with damp cloth and refrigerate.  When ready to serve, slice (6-7 slices to each roll). 


Curried Egg Sandwich

  • 10 hard boiled eggs, chopped
  • 1 cup black olives, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients and blend well.  


Swiss Cheese and Bacon Sandwich

  • 1 cup grated Swiss cheese
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup drained, crumbled crisp bacon (about 6 slices)
  • watercress

Mix first four ingredients together.  Fill sandwiches with mixture.  Trim crusts off.  Garnish with watercress on top.













TEA FOR "TEA"

by Zonia Velasco

Tea used for "high tea" is as varied as the personality and preference of each of the guests.   The naturally decaffeinated ones are green tea  (taken from the young tender tips of the tea plant), white tea (from younger tea leaves that have barely opened up), Jasmine tea (green tea with jasmine flowers), Genmai cha  green tea (Japanese concoction made up of green tea with roasted rice. It has a very pleasing scent and has a strong healing effect on the acidic or upset stomach.  

Green tea is a very healthy brew.  It has strong phytophenol,  and antiantioxidant flavonoid properties that prevents or slows down cell death through free radical formation.  

Tea that is made from the mature leaves of the plant produce the robust dark teas.  These are darker in color and are caffeine rich teas: Among these are the Oolong tea from China, although the more expensive Oolong tea comes from Formosa (Taiwan).   Other countries that produce excellent teas are Sri Lanka (Ceylon) and India which are the sources of  Darjeeling teas.  

Tea can be plain or mixed with other spices.  Earl Grey tea has the flavor of bergamot which is added to it. Bergamot oil comes from small tangy oranges in Asia.

All teas have diuretic effects. In traditional Chinese medicine, it is recommended that hot tea be taken right after meals to "melt" down the fats from the food that had just been enjoyed. (Try putting butter over your fingers and then rubbing them afterwards with tea.  The tea dissolves the fat.) This is tea's claim to reducing cholesterol and preventing clogged arteries. 

Some prefer lemon in their tea.  Some prefer cream.  It is either or. Do not put lemon into your cream tea as this will curdle the cream.  Some use honey, some prefer rock sugar as sweeteners. But tea on its own, without these additives is still preferred by others. 

Bigger tea leaves are preferred over the bagged ones which contain tea dust and dregs from the pure tea leaves during the manufacturing process. 

To prepare a perfect cup of tea,  put boiling water into a teapot, add the tea leaves, then steep to the desired strength.  The longer it is steeped, the stronger the tea becomes.  Steeping  too long will make the tea bitter, nonetheless not affecting the many good benefits it brings to one's health.