Category Archives: Dessert Recipes

Dessert, Cake, Cookie & Bread Recipes for Tea Parties

Pecan Praline Cookies with Brown Sugar Frosting from My Own Sweet Thyme

An awesome holiday cookie recipe…or an all year indulgence! Brown sugar, pecan cookie with brown sugar icing…seriously, what’s not to like?

We hope you enjoy it and thank you to My Own Sweet Thyme for posting it. FYI: This blog is worth checking out!

My Own Sweet Thyme: Pecan Praline Cookies with Brown Sugar Frosting: One of the best things about being a home cook is finding others who share that same interest. It is a delight to meet someone whose eyes …

For your next tea party, we invite you to visit Teapots ‘n More and browse our selection of authentic English bone china tea setsteapotstea accessories and antique tea cups.

Dark Chocolate Ginger Molasses Cookies

A tasty cookie for the Autumn/Winter season and a lovely hostess gift or party favor along with the recipe!

Makes about 5 dozen.

¾ cup softened butter or good margarine such as Imperial
1 cup granulated sugar
¼ cup unsulphured molasses
1 egg
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. ground cloves
½ tsp. ground ginger
½ tsp. salt
¼ pound candied ginger slices, finely diced
¼ to ½ pound dark chocolate, 72%
Additional granulated sugar

1. Reserve 2 Tbsp. candied ginger for decoration. In a large bowl, cream together butter and 1 cup sugar with a pastry blender or a mixer at low speed. Add molasses, egg and remaining candied ginger, beating until well blended.

2. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and salt. Add to butter mixture and mix well. Cover and chill in refrigerator overnight.

3. Form dough into 1 inch balls. Roll each ball in granulated sugar and place on greased cookie sheets 2 inches apart.

4. Bake at 375°F for 6-8 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 1 minutes and remove cookies to wire rack to cool.

5. Melt chopped chocolate in a double boiler or microwave. Using a fork drizzle melted chocolate over cookies. Before chocolate sets, sprinkle tops with reserved candied ginger.

6. After chocolate is set, place cookies in an airtight container and store in a cool place 1 week or freeze for 1 month.

For your next tea party, we invite you to visit Teapots ‘n More and browse our selection of authentic English bone china tea sets, teapots, tea accessories and antique tea cups.

Brown Sugar Shortbread

For your Autumn tea, try this easy & deliciously rich cookie with the taste of buttery caramels. It’s certain to become a year round favorite!

Makes about 3 dozen.

1 cup softened butter (no margarine)
½ cup packed brown sugar
2 ¼ cups flour

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar.

2. Gradually stir in flour. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 3 minutes.

3. Pat into a 3/8″ thick rectangle measuring 11″ by 8″ (about the size of a sheet of lined paper).

4. Cut into 2″ by 1″ strips. Place 1″ apart on ungreased baking sheets. Prick with a fork.

5. Bake for 25 minutes or until bottom begins to brown. Remove from oven and cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container 1-2 weeks or freeze for 3-4 months.

You’re invited to visit Teapots ‘n More and browse our selection of English bone china tea sets, teapots, tea accessories and antique tea cups.

Two Classic English Tea Cakes

If you’re a regular reader, it comes as no surprise that we are big fans of the English tea tradition and especially tea with sweets. This week’s focus is on a few of our favorite classic English tea cake recipes: Victoria Sandwich Cake and Battenburg Cake. We hope you’ll give them a try and share your results with us!

Victoria Sandwich Cake

Victoria Sandwich Cake, or Victoria Sponge Cake, is said to have been named after Queen Victoria who favored this cake with her afternoon tea. The first known recipe was printed in an 1874 edition of Mrs. Beeton’s Cookery and Household Management.

The cake is made up of two layers of sponge cake with any seedless jam or marmalade and whipped cream in the middle. When cake is sandwiched with jam only, it is called a Jam Cake.

Battenburg Cake

Battenburg Cake has been reported as the wedding cake created for the 1884 marriage of Queen Victoria’s granddaughter to Louis of Battenberg, a German prince. The four squares of its unique checkerboard design represent the four princes of Germany at that time.

The cake is actually quite charming. It consists of two square sections of pink sponge cake put together with two square sections of yellow sponge cake. The sections are “glued” together with apricot jam and wrapped in a layer of marzipan.

Below you’ll find links to classic English recipes and tips for these delicious cakes. We admit the recipes are extra work. However, once you’ve done it, the results are worth the effort!

Tips:

- A kitchen scale will be helpful, since ingredients are often weighed out instead of measured in English recipes.

- Castor sugar is superfine sugar. You can make it by whirling granulated white sugar in your food processor to a finer consistency.

- Golden castor sugar is less refined. You can make an acceptable equivalent by whirling Turbinado, Raw or Demerara sugar in  your food processor to a fine consistency. You can also substitute regular granulated white sugar as noted above.

- For Victoria Sandwich Cake, whipped cream or buttercream frosting may be used in the filling. We prefer whipped cream and seedless raspberry or apricot jam.

- A 190 C oven is about 375 degrees F, a 180 C oven is about 350 degrees F, a 170 C oven is about 325 degrees F.  A 160 C oven is between 325-300 degrees F. American sponge cake recipes bake at 350 degrees F. We recommend trying both recipes at 350 F the first time, but keep a close eye on it as actual oven temperatures vary.

- A Battenburg Cake Pan is helpful when making this cake. They appear to be available only from England.  See an Amazon UK listing for this product by clicking on the above highlighted link.

Victoria Sandwich Cake Recipe:

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1997/classic-victoria-sandwich

Battenburg Cake Recipe:

 http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1120657/battenberg-cake

Are you planning a tea party? You’re invited to visit Teapots ‘n More and browse our latest selection of bone china teapots, tea accessories, tea cups, tea miniatures and english bone china tea sets.

Almond Lover’s Scone Recipe

Almond Lover's Scones

We present for your baking & eating pleasure, our new Almond Scone recipe featuring marzipan, almonds and almond extract. Serve them with clotted cream and cherry preserves, pear conserve, orange marmalade or even Nutella!

Almond Lover’s Scones

Makes 24 small scones, 1 1/4 inch (our favorite size) or 10-12 scones, 2 inch or 8-12 wedges.

2 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder (Yes, that is a Tablespoon.)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. almond extract
8 Tbsp. butter
8 Tbsp. (4 fl. oz.) milk
1/2 c. marzipan or almond paste, diced small
4 Tbsp. sliced almonds, divided in half, crushed small using fingers
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar for topping

Almond & Sugar Mixture

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Sift together first 4 ingredients in a large bowl. 

Make Ahead Option #1: At this point, you can turn the oven off and seal this mix in an airtight container (such as a plastic bag) and store for up to 6 months in a cool, dry place. When ready to use, place mix in a large bowl and proceed with step 2. You’ll have tea & scones within a 1/2 hour if you multi-task on the tea. :-)

2. Cut butter into dry ingredients until approximately the size of peas. Add the diced marzipan and two Tbsp. of the sliced & crushed almonds. In a separate bowl, mix together the remaining 2 Tbsp. of almonds and 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar.

Flour Mix with Marzipan & Almonds

3. Measure out milk and add in almond extract. Pour the almond milk  into dry mix and stir to moisten. Dough should be moist enough to form a soft ball, but not sticky. If needed, additional milk may be added 1-2 teaspoons at a time.

4.  Turn dough onto a lightly floured cutting board and press out with hand to approximately 1/2 inch thickness. Tip: Do not knead dough and use as little flour as possible to keep the dough from sticking to the board.

Cutting out the scones

5. Cut into desired shapes and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Lightly brush tops with milk if desired. Sprinkle with previously prepared almond & sugar mix, reserving some for a second dusting after the scones are baked. Tip: If using a biscuit cutter or glass, dip the cutting edge in flour first.

Make Ahead Option #2: At this point, place your scones on a cookie sheet and freeze. When completely frozen, wrap scones well in plastic wrap and foil. Well wrapped scones will keep at least one month. When ready to use, proceed to step six, using frozen scones. Do not thaw first. You’ll have scones in about 20 minutes! :-D

Almond Scones ready to bake

6. Bake for 10-20 minutes depending on size. The 1 1/4 inch scone will be done in approximately 10-13 minutes. Scones are done when lightly golden and the center springs back. Sprinkle again with remaining almond sugar mix while scones are still hot for visual appeal. Best served within 1 day of baking with butter or clotted cream and jam. Store in airtight container if serving later in the day. Tip: When baking, start checking your scones at the minimum baking time. You can always bake longer, but overdone is ruined.

Are you planning a tea party? You’re invited to visit Teapots ‘n More and browse our latest selection of bone china teapots, tea accessories, tea cups, tea miniatures and english bone china tea sets.

Triple Chocolate Scones

Triple Chocolate Scones

As mentioned in our previous post, here is the recipe for Triple Chocolate Scones with two “Make Ahead” options. They’re a scrumptious treat for special days or when you need a little chocolate. We hope you enjoy this fresh approach to our favorite tea treat with “lashings of cream” and jam, as our british friends say.

Triple Chocolate Scones
Makes 24 small scones, 1 1/4 inch (our favorite size) or 10-12 scones, 2 inch or 8-12 wedges.

1 3/4 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder (Yes, that is a Tablespoon.)
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
6 Tbsp. butter
7-8 Tbsp. milk
1/2 cup chocolate chips
3 Tbsp. chopped or grated dark chocolate

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Sift together first 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Add the chocolate chips and dark chocolate.

Make ahead option #1: At this point, you can turn the oven off and seal this mix in an airtight container (such as a plastic bag) and store for up to 6 months in a cool, dry place. When ready to use, place mix in a large bowl and proceed with step 2. You’ll have tea & scones within a 1/2 hour if you multi-task on the tea. :-)

2. Cut butter into dry ingredients until approximately the size of peas.

3. Measure vanilla into a small bowl and add milk. Pour most of the vanilla milk into dry mix and stir to moisten. Dough should be moist enough to form a soft ball, but not sticky. If needed, additional milk may be added 1-2 teaspoons at a time.

4. Turn dough onto a lightly floured cutting board and press out with hand to approximately 1/2 inch thickness.Tip: Do not knead dough and use as little flour as possible to keep the dough from sticking to the board.

Raw Sugar

5. Cut into desired shapes and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Lightly brush tops with milk if desired. Sprinkle with raw sugar crystals or Sparkling White Sugar crystals such as those found at cake decorating supply stores or King Arthur Flour. Raw sugar crystals can be found in the baking aisle of many grocery stores. Tip: If using a biscuit cutter or glass, dip the cutting edge in flour first.

Sparkling White Sugar Crystals

Make ahead option #2: At this point, place your scones on a cookie sheet and freeze. When completely frozen, wrap scones well in plastic wrap and foil. Well wrapped scones will keep at least one month. When ready to use, proceed to step six, using frozen scones. Do not thaw first. You’ll have scones within 20 minutes! :-D

6. Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on size. The 1 1/4 inch scone will be done in about 10 minutes. Sprinkle again with large sugar crystals while scones are still hot for visual appeal. Best served within 1 day of baking with butter or clotted cream and jam. Store in airtight container if serving later in the day. Tip: When baking, start checking your scones at the minimum baking time. You can always bake longer, but overdone is ruined.

Tips for great scones: Scones are like biscuits. To get a tender, flaky scone, the dough should be handled as little as possible and you should always use cold butter and cold milk.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our selection of english bone china teapots, tea accessories, tea cups, tea miniatures and bone china tea sets.

World’s Best Scones Made Even Better

Cranberry Pecan & Triple Chocolate Scones

What’s different? Since scones are basically a sweet biscuit, we dropped the egg. Additionally, we reduced the milk and added two Make Ahead Options. These options allow you to make scones in as little as 20 minutes. We’re especially excited about Make Ahead Option #2 which goes from freezer to oven. We hope you enjoy this new & improved recipe!

World’s Best Scones (made even better)

Makes 24 small scones, 1 1/4 inch (our favorite size) or 10-12 scones, 2 inch or 8-12 wedges.

2 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder (Yes, that is a Tablespoon.)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
6 Tbsp. butter
6 Tbsp. (3 fl. oz.) milk
1/4 cup chopped nuts, if desired
1/2 cup of one or two of the following, if desired: currants, raisins, dried cranberries, dried chopped cherries, chocolate chips, cinnamon chips, dried chopped apricots or apples, etc.

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Sift together first 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Add one or two of the above dried fruits, nuts or chips or leave plain.

Make Ahead Option #1: At this point, you can turn the oven off and seal this mix in an airtight container (such as a plastic bag) and store for up to 6 months in a cool, dry place. When ready to use, place mix in a large bowl and proceed with step 2. You’ll have tea & scones within a 1/2 hour if you multi-task on the tea. :-)

2. Cut butter into dry ingredients until approximately the size of peas.

3. Measure vanilla into a small bowl and add milk. Pour most of the vanilla milk  into dry mix and stir to moisten. Dough should be moist enough to form a soft ball, but not sticky. If needed, additional milk may be added 1-2 teaspoons at a time.

4.  Turn dough onto a lightly floured cutting board and press out with hand to approximately 1/2 inch thickness. Tip: Do not knead dough and use as little flour as possible to keep the dough from sticking to the board.

Sparkling White Sugar Crystals

5. Cut into desired shapes and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Lightly brush tops with milk if desired. Sprinkle with raw sugar crystals or Sparkling White Sugar crystals such as those found at cake decorating supply stores or King Arthur Flour. Raw sugar crystals can be found in the baking aisle of many grocery stores. Tip: If using a biscuit cutter or glass, dip the cutting edge in flour first.

Raw Sugar

Make Ahead Option #2: At this point, place your scones on a cookie sheet and freeze. When completely frozen, wrap scones well in plastic wrap and foil. Well wrapped scones will keep at least one month. When ready to use, proceed to step six, using frozen scones. Do not thaw first. You’ll have scones within 20 minutes! :-D

6. Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on size. The 1 1/4 inch scone will be done in about 10 minutes. Sprinkle again with large sugar crystals while scones are still hot for visual appeal. Best served within 1 day of baking with butter or clotted cream and jam. Store in airtight container if serving later in the day. Tip: When baking, start checking your scones at the minimum baking time. You can always bake longer, but overdone is ruined.

Check out our Triple Chocolate Scone recipe too!

Tips for great scones: Scones are like biscuits. To get a tender, flaky scone, the dough should be handled as little as possible and you should always use cold butter and cold milk.

For more tips, check out our article on Squidoo: How to Make Great Scones.

Some of our favorite combinations are:

Cranberry-Orange Pecan:  1/2 cup dried cranberries, 1/4 cup chopped pecans and 1/2 tsp. orange zest

Cinnamon Chip: 1/2 cup mini cinnamon chips and 1/2-1 tsp. ground cinnamon

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our selection of english bone china teapots, tea accessories, tea cups, tea miniatures and bone china tea sets. 

Sherried Fruit Cookies

These cookies are a little work, but worth it! They taste like sherried fruit & nut cake in a thin butter cookie. Perfect for Christmas Tea.

Sherried Fruit Cookies
Makes approximately 8 dozen.

Ingredients

½ pound good quality dried figs
¼ pound raisins or currants
2 ounces candied cherries, coarsely chopped
2 ounces dried apricots, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon honey
2-3 tablespoons dry sherry
1 tablespoon lemon juice
6 ounces chopped pecans
Pinch of kosher salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ cup superfine sugar (++see note below about “superfine” sugar)
1/3 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 extra-large egg
2  2/3 cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt

(++you can make “superfine” sugar by processing granulated sugar for 60-90 seconds, measure AFTER)

NOTE: preparation for the fruit in these cookies requires starting a day before you bake. 

Directions:

Snip off the hard stems of the figs with scissors or a small knife and coarsely chop the figs. In a medium bowl, combine the figs, raisins, cherries, apricots, honey, sherry, lemon juice, pecans, and a pinch of kosher salt. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit overnight at room temperature.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, cloves, superfine sugar, and brown sugar on medium speed until smooth, about 3 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the egg and mix until incorporated. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt just until combined. Don’t over-mix! Add the fruits and nuts, including any liquid in the bowl. Divide the dough in quarters and place each quarter on the long edge of a 12 by 18-inch piece of parchment or waxed paper. Roll each quarter into a log, 1 ½ inches in diameter, making a 9-inch-long roll. (We then made the rolls triangular just for fun.) Refrigerate the dough for several hours or overnight.  Just before slicing, place each roll in the freezer for 10 minutes (which will enable you to make thinner slices.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

With your sharpest knife, cut the logs into very THIN slices (1/4 to 1/8-inch). Place the slices 1/2-inch apart on parchment-paper-lined baking sheets and bake for 15-18 minutes, until golden.  Store in air-tight container. Cookies will be crisp at first and soften like butter cookies over the next few days.

 Adapted from Ina Garten’s BACK TO BASICS COOKBOOK.

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Grandma’s Canadian Lemon Bread

Rich & moist with a tart lemony top, this is a versatile, classic quick bread we think you’ll love! Be sure to check out the tips and serving suggestions at the bottom of this recipe.

Grandma’s Canadian Lemon Bread
Makes at least 2 small loaves.

½ cup shortening
1 ¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups flour
½ cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
Grated rind & juice of 1 lemon (3 Tbsps.)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Blend shortening and eggs in a bowl. Reserve ¼ cup sugar, and sift remaining 1 cup of sugar with baking powder, salt and flour. Add to egg mixture along with milk and mix well.

2. Stir in grated lemon peel and fill small loaf pans, greased and floured, about half to two-thirds full. Bake for 45-60 minutes. Bread is done if top springs back when lightly depressed or toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

3. Combine lemon juice with remaining ¼ cup of sugar and mix well. Spoon lemon glaze slowly over hot lemon bread so glaze will soak into cake – this is a clear glaze. Cool completely. Slice thin and serve with butter. Bread may be stored in freezer for several months before use.

(Double wrap in plastic wrap and then foil if storing in freezer.)

Tips and Serving Suggestions:

- Ovens vary in temperature, so be sure to start checking for doneness early. You can always bake longer, but over baked is ruined.

- If you like a really tart lemony flavor, don’t be afraid to double the lemon glaze. This dense bread can handle it!

- A visit to the freezer, double wrapped, makes this bread even moister. This is our favorite trick for moist cakes and breads. When you thaw, keep the loaves tightly wrapped.

- This bread is wonderful on its own served thinly sliced (1/4” slices). However, it is equally yummy thinly sliced and sandwiched with a little softened butter and/or preserves such as raspberry, apricot or a tart fruit curd ie: lemon or lime.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our newest selection of teapots, tea accessories, teacups, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.

German Apple Cake

German Apple Cake
Great apple pie flavor in a moist cake with a “cookie-crunchy” crust. Delicious and easy! Makes 24 bars.

2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup oil (yes, 1 cup!)
2 eggs
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups flour
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
4 medium sized baking apples: peeled, cored and chopped into 1/2″ chunks

1. Sift dry ingredients together into a bowl and set aside.

2. In an electric mixer, beat oil and eggs until creamy. Add the sugar and vanilla and mix well.

3. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture until combined. The batter will be almost like a paste. Fold in apples with spatula or wooden spoon.

4. Spread batter into a greased and floured 9″ x 13″ pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Let cake cool, cut into 24 bars and dust with powdered sugar.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our selection of teapots, tea accessories, teacups, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.