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    Tea With Scones

    Thursday, November 12, 2009

    For the past two days it's been icy cold, very windy, and we've been surrounded by this:

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    For obvious reasons, there has been none of this:

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    In fact, because of this weather, we may not even have a tournament at all.

    Thanks, Ida. You're a real doll.

    There have been plenty of good things to come from this storm, however.

    Being huddled indoors for two days straight during these cold, rainy days has provided us with lots of time for play, a bit of home maintenance, and when we've settled down, time for some good, hot drinks.

    I've set my coffee addiction aside the past couple of days so eldest and I could enjoy tea in quiet moments together.

    Quiet times are few and far between sometimes, but we find them. My mother taught me the importance of finding them.

    She has taught me many things, one of which I'm about to invite you all in to share.

    Tea.

    If you want a lesson in taking tea-High or otherwise-my mother is the woman to approach.

    Snuggle!!

    Since I was a small child she has been hosting tea's at our homes and at Windsor Court. It's a tradition eldest and I have carried on, and one we all participate in together when Mimi is in town.

    Her most recent visit was no exception, and this time I even took pictures.

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    It was rather informal as it was a rainy, cold Sunday, but it did not take away from the delightful smells and tastes as we cooked together, and enjoyed the fruits of our labors.

    First Taste

    I'll admit that I had no part in the baking process this time. Eldest was Mimi's sous chef and I was the photographer. Someone had to document this occasion.

    Scones

    Baking is a little time consuming-especially when you're working with children-but this makes the end result all the more precious.

    There's something about bringing your family together over an activity that fuses those bonds of love and tradition a little more firmly. Plus, it's just plain fun.

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    I want to take you all to where our teatime fun began, in fact, it's the place where all good things start: the beginning.

    Lemon Curd

    Mother first made the lemon curd so it would have time to cool.

    She prepared it while the children and I were cleaning up that morning (and the wee one was napping). It's an absolute must at any tea. Not too tart, not too sweet, it falls right in between and tastes divine on scones or on holiday meringues.

    As evident in the spoon-sized crater, I may have sampled a little bit. And yes, it was delicious!

    Lemon Curd

    Next came the scones. I love the prep work and watching my mother skillfully work her magic. Who knows how many times over the years she has done this: the rolling, the careful kneading, cutting and placing scones on trays to be baked.

    It seems to be a number too high to count, but I know the process like the back of my hand from seeing it many, many times. This time was much more precious though, as eldest assisted.

    From throwing out and spreading the flour,

    Flour

    to eldest mixing,

    Mixing the Batter

    spooning it out onto the floured countertop,

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    to those carefully counted kneads, cuts, and placing them on a baking sheet.

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    It was like a symphony in the key of "B"-for baking, of course!

    Eldest was thrilled to be a helper.

    We chose to make ours plain-no currants, no fruits or toffee or caramel chips. We wanted something very simple that day.

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    But before the scones could be placed into the oven, my mother wanted to try something new: beaten egg whites and sugar placed atop the unbaked scones.

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    I'll tell you this much, it added a delicious extra layer to the scones. The top layer was a little fluffy, and a sweet compliment to the simple flavor of this little tea biscuit.

    Granted, it won't give you the pretty, high-gloss you'd get if you brushed unwhipped egg-whites on top, or the traditional plain appearance if you eliminated the use of egg whites altogether, but I thought it was a delicious alternative.

    But no scone-or tea service-would be complete without clotted cream (or in this case, the whipped variety), so as the scones cooled, out came the mixer.

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    The wee one watched in fascination as it all came together.

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    And soon, the scones were ready to be enjoyed. Mimi and eldest fixed up their plates, placed dollops of cream, curd, butter, and jams atop and savored the taste of their hard work.

    Do you think they enjoyed their teatime treats?

    Ooooh So GOOOD!!

    Busted

    Maybe just a little.

    It was wonderful to watch my mother and daughter work away in the kitchen. It was lovely to sit down together and enjoy our scrumptious scones. But most of all it was great to do something together as a family: sharing and enjoying a tradition we all love and carry in a special place in our hearts...

    Fixed Up Scones

    And in our stomachs.

    Recipes to come soon!

    2 Responses to “
    Tea With Scones

    Kimberly said...

    oh my goodness!! recipies to come?!?! i'm SOOO excited! i LOVE scones, lemon curd, and tea...

    i love reading about what you guys are up to...i love all the traditions and delicious recipies, but mostly the love and joy that is so evident. i check your site everyday and look forward to reading and seeing all that you are up to!

    Ruth said...

    So fun! I hope to enjoy it one day.