Tag Archives: winter

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.

Making Chai Tea

As the weather in Southern California is finally starting to hint at autumn (a cool 78 degrees!), our thoughts around the office are turning gratefully to rainy days, good books and a good cup of hot tea! It’s funny what you miss when you don’t have it. In the middle of January, I’m sure we’ll be looking fondly toward Summer having forgotten the sweltering heat.

With those thoughts in mind, it occurs to me that now might be a good time to post a refresher on making that spicy good tea, Chai. Much has been written on this cold weather favorite, so let’s just share the brewing basics.

Brewing Chai:  Place 1 heaping teaspoon of tea for each cup into your teapot. Pour boiling water into teapot. Cover and let steep for 5-10 minutes – yes, this is more tea and a longer steeping time for a good strong brew.  While the tea is brewing, put 1 teaspoon of sugar in each of your cups – this can be adjusted to taste, artifical sweetner also works fine. Adding sweetner helps open up the exotic flavor of this spicy blend. Add milk to your cups (about 20% of the cup’s volume). When the chai is ready, strain into cups and enjoy.

Personally, I use one packet of Splenda – yes, I know it might kill me. AND I do use cream instead of milk because I like the added body and that “slickery” feeling the cream offers.

If you like a full bodied tea with strong flavors, we highly recommend Chai tea. It’s a terrific brew for Autumn & holiday gatherings. We have an exceptional Vanilla Chai available in our store, should you like to indulge yourself. As always, we’d love to hear your thoughts!

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

Paper Doilies: The Decorating Wonder!

Party Decorating on the Cheap
Need a cheap, versatile decorating idea? Two words: Paper Doilies!

We had an epiphany shopping at the local Walmart, which judging from the information already on the internet was late in coming! We needed doilies for store use and purchased a 24 pack of round paper doilies in three size (12″, 8″ & 6″) by Wilton for $2.00.  Such a deal! That’s when we realized the awesome, cheap decorating power of the paper doily.

Think about it. Need to decorate a cake? Paper doilies and powdered sugar. Decorate a table? Paper doilies. Place cards? Doilies. Invitations? Doilies!

So, with a doily in hand for inspiration, here is a list of basic ideas as a springboard for your imagination and some links to ideas from other creative people. Please share your great ideas as well. If you’ve got a Walmart nearby, go for the Wilton Cakes display. I’ll bet you find paper doilies…the decorating wonder!

If you can’t find paper doilies, here are some online resources:  from Create For Less – 32 Assorted Round White Doilies for $1.94, from Kids Crafts Plus – 96 Assorted Round White Doilies for $7.45, from Sur La Table – 48 Assorted Square White Doilies for $9.95. We also noticed some good deals on Ebay and Etsy searching under Paper Doilies.

Paper Doily Ideas:


1.  Decorate a cake with doilies.  Lay a doily or doilies in  a pattern on top of a dark cake such as chocolate,  gingerbread or even brownies. Sift with powdered sugar and carefully lift doilies. For the prettiest look, be sure to use a doily that does not have a solid circle of paper in the middle.

2.   Use large doilies as place mats under table settings. This is most effective on a colored tablecloth.

3.   Dress up serving plates/trays with doilies or set off a special dessert with a doily.

4.   Arrange different sized doilies on a colored tablecloth and cover with sheer fabric or tulle netting.

5.   Take the same idea as above but make a doily table runner.

6.   Use a doily as an invitation.

7.   Dress up a paper napkin by folding it inside a doily. My thought here is to fold a square napkin in half lengthwise and fold a round doily in half. Then place the now rectangular napkin in the now half-round doily and give it all a good crease.

8.   Use 4″ round doilies as place cards at each table setting.

9.   Decorate small favor boxes with small doilies.

10. Make a luminary table decoration with white paper bags, candles, sand, paper doilies, glue and scissors. While your bag is still folded up, scallop the top edges with a scissor. Glue doilies on the inside of your bags making sure to glue all edges to the bag. When dry, add 1-2 inches of sand and votive candles or battery operated votive candles. Remember the safety of your guests: never leave a burning candle unattended.

11. Make a Paper Lace Garland – a charming idea from Project Wedding!

You’re invited to Teapots ‘n More for a look at our newest English Bone China Tea Sets, Teapots, Tea Accessories and much more!

Autumn/Winter Tea Menus

Autumn Tea Menu

Apple & Cinnamon Tea*
Cinnamon Sticks for Stirrers
Pumpernickel & Cheddar Triangles*
Piquant Ham Squares*
Cucumber & Watercress Sandwiches*
Apple & Walnut Scones* (Use our Best Scones recipe)
Cranberry Orange Bread*
Brown Sugar Shortbread*
Lemon Curd*
Clotted Cream or Mock Clotted Cream*

Winter Tea Menu

Orange Spiced Tea*
Toad in the Hole*
Pumpernickel & Cheddar Triangles*
Savory Beef Spirals*
Chocolate Chip Scones* (Use our Best Scones recipe)
Grandma’s Christmas Nut Cake*
Grandma’s Russian Tea Cakes*
Lemon Curd*
Clotted Cream or Mock Clotted Cream*

*For these recipes, check out our free tea recipes blog: teapotsnmore.wordpress.com.

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

Christmas/Winter Tea

Christmas or Winter Tea
Celebrate the season or chase away the Mid-Winter blues!

Christmas and the winter season in general can be a lonely or difficult time for many, maybe even you. So, start a new tradition. Host a Christmas tea or chase away the winter blues in the company of friends, old and new!

Tablecloth Idea:
Cover table with a solid color tablecloth. Arrange paper doilies or handmade snowflakes on it. Cover the snowflakes with store bought net or tulle. This will keep the snowflakes in place. And it’s inexpensive!

Centerpiece Idea:
Place a flat mirror of any shape on table. Arrange pillar candles, sculpted candles or themed candles (like fruit, trees, etc) of different heights in your chosen color scheme on the mirror. Sprinkle table with some iridescent glitter. Or check out our Quick & Easy centerpiece ideas.

Tip: Look in bargain stores for candles.

Hostess Gift Idea:
A new ornament, a handmade Christmas treat, or a bubble bath gift bag made up of a scented votive candle, a packet of bubble bath, a tea bag and a piece of chocolate placed in a decorated paper sack.

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