here and there

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Scones with Clotted cream

Clotted cream, Devonshire cream is a must with scones at a High Tea.

In researching the recipes for Devonshire cream,  I found many recipes adding sour cream, cream cheese or Mascarpone cheese to heavy cream.  Although, I had not had clotted cream, I remember tasting thicken cream on the farm that was not sour but was very thick and sweet.   My Mom had a special house built for her to separate her cows'  milk.  The freshly milked cows' milk was poured into a large stainless steel cream separator which separated the cream from the milk using centrifugal force. 

We used this sweet thicken cream on farm grown strawberries but I can't remember what my Mom called it.  Not being satisfied with adding something to the cream to make Devonshire cream, I phoned my friend who once ran a Tea Shop in Manitoba.  Yes, you do not add anything to the cream, you just let it thicken at very low heat for many hours.

The results were just as I had remember; thick, lush and sweet!

Oh Yes, be patient! 

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Tzatziki Sauce (Yogurt and Cucumber)

For this sauce, yogurt was drained in a colander overnight in the refrigerator. 

To this drained yogurt, grated cucumber, fresh ground pepper, lemon rind and juice, minced garlic and chopped fresh mint was added. The sauce was refrigerator for a couple of hours for the flavors to develop.

The sauce was plated with the lamb meatballs

Friday, July 24, 2015

Fancy Sandwiches for High Tea

Oh, I get by with a little help from my friends
Mmm, gonna try with a little help from my friends
Oh, I get by with a little help from my friends

On my planning list for the bridal shower was fancy Tea Sandwiches that are popular for High Tea.  When I had planned showers for my girlfriends years ago, I had made open face bun sandwiches with fillings that could also be used in tea sandwiches. Our church in another city had put on an Easter Tea and served plates of tea sandwiches, which were such a hit with everyone. 

The preparation I left to the day of the shower as the sandwiches can not be made ahead of time.  My friend and I started the sandwiches three hours before the shower.  Nancy took over saying she had three daughter and used to making them for their tea parties. 

The list of sandwiches were as follows;

Smoked Salmon with cucumber, Salad Cream English dressing, garden fresh dill on Rye
Thinly sliced cucumber, chopped mint, butter on whole wheat
Watermelon bread finger sandwiches with cream cheese and crushed pineapple and pickled ginger
Thinly sliced garden Radishes with butter on white
Camembert, Figs and Candied Walnuts opened faced Brioche  

My neighbor, Theresa showed up with two huge platters with beautifully decorated Tea Sandwiches.  

Pinwheels, cut out hearts, open faced  and finger sandwiches with fillings of egg salad, salmon on egg salad, cream cheese and cheddar.  What a beautiful arrangement of sandwiches!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Camembert, Figs and Candied Walnuts open faced Brioche sandwiches

This was my daughter's favourite that I served for her High Tea bridal shower.

Maybe it was the camembert slices. It could have been the candied pecans that I baked using molasses and some chill flakes.  Or it could have been the Brioche, my Babka bread that I make for Easter that reminded her of her grandmother and the lovely breads she baked!   

One could use the same recipe that I used for the watermelon bread or the pinwheels. Here is my aunt's recipe that uses 10 cups of flour, one could reduce the recipe or make all of it and freeze half the dough for other uses later.

Slices of Bread were toasted and assembled with a slice of camembert cheese, dried figs topped with candied pecans.  

I had planned to pick up fresh figs at a new Italian market that opened up very close to my neighborhood, but I think the dried figs worked well with the cheese and the candies pecans.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Foie Gras on Dried Apricot Appetizers

This appetizer for the High Tea Bridal shower was suggested by my husband. We had tasted this in Paris at a reception.  Foie gras was served with dried apricots along with Champagne.  

A perfect combination that my daughter loved!

Since I couldn't find foie gras, I used duck and pork Pate instead.  I had thought I would marinade the dried apricot as I thought the paring would be nicer.  I tried the pate with the dried apricots and canned apricots, my husband and I preferred the dried apricot better as it did not take away from the taste of the pate. 

I had originally thought of assembling a marinaded apricot with pate on caramelized onions. 

I do not have a picture of the appetizer itself, the appetizer is on a Birk's Vintage cake stand between the Ladybugs  and the Beet appetizers

Monday, July 20, 2015

Pickled Beet, Goat's cheese and fresh Mint appetizers

This appetizer quickly disappeared at the bridal shower.  Maybe it was the color or just the amazing taste of pickled Beets with Feta Cheese and garden fresh curly Mint! 

The appetizers was very quick to assemble and looked spectacular plated on a white dish.

Although I had robust pickled beets that I had canned last fall, I decided to go with store bought sliced pickled beets for convenience as my canned beets were whole! 

The beet slices do need to be dried so that they are not messy on your plate. Crumble feta cheese on the beet slices, then garnish with a fresh Mint leave!  Drizzle Balsamic vinegar on the Beet bites.

Ladybug Appetizers

An idea that has been floating around the net is cute little lady bugs made from cherry tomatoes, pitted black olives, basil and something for the lady bug to sit on. Some used crostini, others slices of cheese to layer the ladybug on.  I used provolone cheese shaped in a log which was easy to slice.  Some use reduced Balsamic Vinegar for the dots, yes, we did try but the dots ran away!  

Since I had chives, my friend used them to make ladybug antennae. Very Cute!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Apple Roses

Apple Roses for the dessert table.  Making roses out of fruit and vegetables seems to be the trend this year. 

Since I was using my mini muffin tray, I needed a very thin strip rolled out from the dough.  The width of the strip should be smaller than the depth of your muffin tin cup. 

The recipe for the dough is the same I used for the other appetizers like Watermelon bread and Bacon, Mango and Pecan rolls.  

Use a mandolin cutter  to cut very thin strips of apples. 

The apples are placed in a microwavable bowl with water and juice from half a lemon. 
Microwave for 2 to 3 minutes to soften the apple slices which makes the slices easier to roll into a rose.

Spread the rolled out dough with jam.
I used a peach jam that I had canned last year but one can use any type of jam one has on hand.

Place the apples on one side of the strip, overlapping a little bit so that you can see the apple slices. 

Fold up the bottom edge of the dough over the apple and roll. 

Make tiny roses as you roll and cut before you roll out another rose.  

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in a preheated oven 375 degrees

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Victorian Style Hat for High Tea

Since the theme for the bridal shower was Hats, Lace, Gloves and Beads,  I decided to cover a large brim hat for the shower.  I used the above picture as my inspiration for the hat.  The picture of the lady in a wide brim hat is my husband's Mom and her brother.   The picture was taken on her wedding day.

I had planned to glue gun the fabric to the hat, but decided to try using my sewing machine, which work perfectly much to my delight!  I centred the hat on the fabric and pulled it around the brim and folding it to the centre of the hat.

I sewed the fabric close to the crown of the hat.  One could be more accurate in folding and measuring the fabric to the crown.

Cut the edge of the fabric close to the sewing line to reduce bulk.

Next, I cut out a circle to fit the crown of hat and also sewed this close to the crown edge.

I gathered a fine white netting to cover the crown and also sewed this close to the crown edge. This gave the hat extra softens!

I finished of the hat by tying a lace with gold threads to it.  The fabric was also cut so as to be able to wear hat and a ribbon was glued to the inside to hid the edges.

 I was very pleased with the results!

Since I had decorated the house with fresh pink and white roses from my garden, the finishing touch was roses glue gunned to the brim!

Baked Green Olives

These plump green Olives that were a Christmas gift have been sitting in my refrigerator. They were a perfect Olive to be baked for an appetizer
 I used my toaster oven to bake the olives. 
The tray was covered in aluminum foil for easy cleanup!
Splash Olive Oil on the olives, add sliced Lemons, crushed child flakes and fresh Rosemary. 
Toss to cover the olives.
Bake at 325 for about an hour.
Serve warm.

Can anything be easier or prettier?

Infused water

This was such a hit and looked so great great with fresh mint from the garden and fresh seasonal fruit like Bing Cherries and Blueberries