(Upper Left) Tea guests Dorothy (chintz polo shirt) and Kathleen (black cardigan and chintz blouse) survey the desert table. Directly in front of the ladies on the tea table are chocolate-dipped shortbread heart cookies alternated with decadent chocoalte-dipped strawberries. Toward the front is clotted cream encircled by freshly baked English Scones accompanied by Raspberry Jam. At table center is a heavenly Chocolate Pound Cake and Skor-Bar Trifle. At the back of the table sits the meticulously-polished Silver Service ready to dispense two types of delicious tea, the ubiquitous Orange Pekoe, and a new favorite, Chocolate Dessert Tea ( a perfect accompaniment to all things Chocolate!)as well as a rich, dark brewed coffee. (Lower-Upper Left))The first course in an afternoon tea is a variety of savouries, consisting of sandwiches (egg salad, curried chicken, cucumber with cream cheese and dill, and for those with a sweet tooth, the ever-popular cherry-cheese sandwich.) Also served was a spinach dip accompanied with rice crackers and miniature toast-point ramkins., as well as tuna mushroom toastades. Each dish was garnished with a variety of crudite and/or grapes)
(Lower left) More desserts are featured on a lovely silver tray. Starting from the left are buterscotch squares, followed by chocolate, oatmeal and cocont macaroons, lemon-curd shortbread tartlets and Nova Scoita's famous Cape Breton Pork Pies (not REALLY made of pork but a to-die-for puree of cooked dates, demerara sugar and lemon ensconsed in a shortbread tartlet, and topped with a diminuitive dolop of maple syrup butter cream. My husband's hands-down favorite!)
(Below) Elisia can always be depended upon to help out in the kitchen. What a gem of a friend!
Rose's Tea Scones
Set oven to 375 or 400 degrees F. (depending on how hot your oven bakes)
Please read through the Complete Listing of Ingredients before you start!
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking POWDER
1 teaspoon salt
Add One of the following four options
1/2 c. currants soaked in hot water and drained once they are plumped
1/2 cup raisins ( if they are really dry you can soak and drain these as well)
1/2 cup dried apricots cut into the size of raisins, along with 1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup (one stick) extremely cold butter cut into eight pieces
1/4 cup granualted sugar
1 egg (room temperature)
1 teaspoon real vanilla
enough homogenized milk or cereal cream to make 1 cup of liquid when combined with the egg and vanilla
Combine the following ingredients using a wire wisk.
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
Reserve 2 tblsps of the flour mixture.
Then, using a pastry cutter, cut into the remaining flour mixture 1/2 c ( 1 stick) very cold butter (which has been cut into eight large pieces) until it looks like coarse oatmeal.
In a small bowl, add the 2 tablespoons of reserved flour mixture to one of the OPTIONAL ingredients, making sure to coat them thoroughly.
Add the optional ingredients gently to the rest of the flour and buter mixture.
Gently add 1/4 cup granulated sugar
In a 2 cup measuring cup, lightly beat one room temperature egg. Add to that 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and enough homogenized milk (or cereal cream) to make one cup of liquid.
Using a fork, add 1/3 of the wet ingredients to the flour,butter, optional ingredient, sugar mixture, blending gently, but thoroughly. Add the next 1/3, blending gently, but thoroughly.and the final 1/3 blending gently until it incorporated. You should still be able to see small bits of butter in the dough. Do not over mix!
Turn the mixture onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently 4 or five times until it just holds together. Use a VERY GENTLE HAND when kneading the scones. Pat gently into a 1 1/2 high rectangle and cut into 8 large rounds or 12 smaller rounds. Place scones in a 9x9 ungreased square cake pan. Bake until the scones are a medium golden brown. (Larger scones take longer to bake than smaller ones!) Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes, before turing them out and seperating them Serve warm with clotted cream and jam., or at room temperatrue later in the day. These are best when they are eaten on the day they are made. Bon Apetit!