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It’s high time for high tea

We are all so busy these days, it’s no wonder we’ve forgotten how to make tea in the old-world way. These are some quick recipes to put together a traditional teatime for your friends along with the proper way to make tea. There’s something to be said for making time for traditions like this one. Scones, tea sandwiches, chicken liver pate with baguette and bite-sized Quiche Lorraine round out the menu.
It’s all very easy and your friends will think you slaved all day.

Ingredients – Scones

3 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt (regular salt will be too salty)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 stick of very cold butter, diced
1cup of cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup raisins

Method

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Whisk together dry ingredients. Put in food processor. Add butter and buzz until the mixture looks like small peas.Add cream and vanilla. Buzz just until it starts to come together. Flour a board and put the dough on it. Fold in the raisins. Do not overwork the dough! Roll out 3/4″ thick and cut into triangles. Place on a sprayed or non-stick baking sheet. Brush with milk or thinned egg white and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden.

Ingredients- Chicken Liver Pate

1 large onion
1 TB olive oil
1 lb chicken livers
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
splash ofwhite wine
2 hard boiled eggs, chopped

Method

Slice onion thinly, using a food processor attachment, if desired. Heat 1 TB oil over medium high heat in a frying pan. Add onion and saute for a couple of minutes, add small splash of white wine, then turn down to medium low and cook until caramelized. Trim livers, add to pan. Add salt/pepper. Add a little more olive oil, if needed. Cook for 10-12minutes. Put mixture in food processor and pulse until just combined.Check for seasoning. It will probably need more salt and pepper. Serve over toast points or toasted baguette garnishing with the chopped hard boiled eggs.

Tea Sandwiches

Ingredients

1/2 lb of various leftover cheeses or one type is okay
splash of white wine
1jar of pimento or piquillo peppers
1 can or gourmet jar of tuna fish in olive oil
1 1/2 TB of mayo or homemade mayo
2 TB celery, diced very small
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 cucumber
1 package soft cream cheese
sea salt/ white pepper
1 loaf of quality white bread,unsliced (Ploughman’s loaf) or thinly sliced sandwich bread

Method

This is much faster if you use unsliced bread, but you can do it either way and make two sandwiches at a time with the sliced bread (take the crust off). Cut the crust off the unsliced loaf and slice it lengthwise into long slices less than 1/2″ thick. In a food processor, combine the cheese (break it up first) a pinch of salt and a pinch of pepper. Begin to buzz it on and off and add a little splash of white wine to combine.Let the processor go until the cheese is smooth. Remove to a bowl and add 2-3 TB of VERY WELL DRAINED, diced pimento or piquillo. Spread mixture on the bread and cut into triangles or rectangles.

Make your tuna fish the way you normally do. Add celery and mustard. Spread on the bread and cut into triangles or rectangles.

Thinly slice cucumber (using a food processor attachment, if necessary). Spread cream cheese on both slices of bread. Add sliced cucumber on one half. Season with salt and pepper. Cut into sandwiches in the usual manner.

Quiche Lorraine

Ingredients

1 cup flour
1 stick cold butter
1 cup cream
4 egg yolks
pinch of nutmeg
1 lb bacon
1/2 lb Gruyere cheese

Method

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Add flour to food processor. Dice butter and add. Buzz until it looks like small peas. Add 1/4 cup very cold water with processor running just until it comes together. Form in disc and wrap with plastic. Chill. Fry bacon until very crisp. You can also do this in the microwave between two paper towels on a microwave safe plate. Grate cheese using processor. Combine cream, yolks and nutmeg.Roll out pastry into a 9 inch tart pan. Chop bacon into 1/4″ pieces. Add cheese and bacon to tart. Distributing well. Add custard mixture. Bake for about 40 minutes until the custard comes clean when you poke a knife in it. Allow to cool slightly before slicing into bite sized pieces.

Tea – Ingredients/Equipment

1 ceramic teapot
1 stove teapot
1 small tea strainer
Quality loose tea such as Twinings
half and half
sugar cubes

Pour very hot water into the ceramic teapot to warm it while you boil the water for the tea (one cup for each person). When the water boils,take off the heat and pour out the water from the ceramic pot. Add the boiling water with one generous tsp of tea for each cup, plus one for the pot. Allow to steep for TWO minutes only. Then pour into teacups (some pots have built-in strainers otherwise use small tea strainer). Add half and half and sugar cubes as desired.

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