As regular followers of my food blog will know, I love china teacups and teapots! I use them regularly and, in fact, enjoy my daily afternoon tea break with tea in one of the teacups from my collection. Today, my afternoon tea is a little bit more formal than usual and it is centered around PEI’s official floral emblem – the Lady’s Slipper which blooms in June.
The Lady’s Slipper is not an altogether commonly found flower in PEI though it does indeed exist in both pink and white. I have long adored these beautiful orchids and have amassed a collection of Lady’s Slipper themed dishes and china so, today, I have selected a couple of my Lady’s Slipper teacups, cake plate, teapot, and creamer for teatime.
My latest (at time of writing) Lady’s Slipper teacup acquisition is the lovely Lady’s Slipper pattern from Elizabethan’s Canadian Provincial Flowers series.
The cup has a potbellied shape and sits upon a stylish little scalloped pedestal base. The cup features heavy embossing as well as gold trim on the rim, handle, and just above the pedestal base. The handle is a classic loop broken style.
A large pink and white Lady’s Slipper set amidst green leaves adorns the front of the cup. A tiny Lady’s Slipper appears on the inside rear of the cup and a slightly larger on the reverse exterior, both mirroring the large floral display on the front exterior of the cup.
The companion cup and saucer I have chosen for my tea table is also from Elizabethan Fine Bone China but is in a different shape with straighter sides. The floral motif on this cup is the same as the potbellied cup above.
So, it’s obvious that pink is going to factor significantly into my color scheme for today’s teatime. I have selected tea-sized napkins with a pink background and, not surprising, a teacup pattern! A basic flat fold is simplistic, especially on a small tea table.
As it is frowned upon to pick Lady’s Slippers because the orchids tend not to rejuvenate themselves if plucked from their natural habitat, I obviously do not have any of the lovely orchids on my table. Instead, I went to my backyard flower garden and picked a selection of pretty pink and white tulips.
My choice of teapot features, not only the Lady’s Slipper, but an iconic PEI lighthouse and a lobster fishing boat. There is no manufacturer’s mark on the teapot so I have no information on its origins.
I came across a small creamer that has a matching pattern to that of the teapot. The creamer was manufactured by Jubilee Fine Bone China (England).
I think the teapot and creamer make a lovely set. Today, for our teatime, the teapot is holding King Cole Orange Pekoe Tea.
Because we are making teatime a little special event today, we are starting off with Grapefruit Mimosas, a lovely cool and refreshing drink.
So, of course, we are going to begin with the savory course of afternoon tea and then work our way through the scones course, and then finish off with a selection of delectable small desserts. I don’t have recipes published for every food item in this posting but, for those that I do, I will put the hotlinks into the text for easy access.
Here’s what my tea table looked like with the savory and scones courses. While I will sometimes put all three courses on a three-tier server and serve it all at once to the table, today I opted to use a two-tier server for the first two courses and then cleared the table from courses one and two and brought out the sweets plate separately.
Typically, for the savory course, I will provide two to three different items. That, of course, is dependent upon what I am offering and how substantial the offerings are. On today’s tea table, I have two items, the quintessential Cucumber Sandwiches in open-face fashion and the more substantial Mini Lobster Croissants served on a bed of lettuce.
I have used mini croissants and stuffed them with the same filling as I use in my lobster rolls (recipe here). For teatime fare, I prefer to use the smaller canner lobsters as the pieces are much smaller and identifiable when used in smaller sandwiches or croissants. Using the larger market lobster means chopping the meat resulting in the shapes of the claws, etc., often being lost when used to fill small sandwiches. Everything for teatime should be proportionately small sized and dainty. The items are not meant to be full meal-sized portions.
How scrumptious does this look!
I have opted to use plain scones for today’s teatime. The recipe I have used is my Currant and Orange Scones (click here for recipe) but I have left the currants and orange zest out, resulting in melt-in-the-mouth plain scones. Can you see the layers of buttery good flakiness!
The toppings for today’s scones include the traditional strawberry jam along with rhubarb curd (recipe here) and clotted cream, of course.
I added a wee bit of pink gel food coloring to my Rhubarb Curd to achieve this pretty deep pink color. Left to its natural color, the curd is more of an orange shade.
I am not going to venture to weigh into whether the proper way to apply clotted cream is before or after the jam or curd is applied to the scone. I am going to take the diplomatic approach and say I like it both ways!
And, then of course, there is the pièce de résistance – the dessert or sweets course! Again, I typically provide a selection of 2-3 sweet treats for teatime, sometimes (but not always) featuring a signature dessert as I have done today.
Miniature Victoria Sponge Cakes filled with strawberry jam and whipped cream and topped with a fresh strawberry are the signature dessert for today’s teatime.
Pretty little pink French Macarons are often a teatime offering and they certainly fit into today’s color scheme! Vanilla flavored, the Macarons are filled with buttercream icing.
Melt-in-the-mouth Melting Moments Cookies covered in a delectable pink buttercream frosting are always a teatime favorite. The recipe for my Melting Moments can be found here.
As an added treat to the sweet plate, I have included some locally handmade artisan chocolates produced by Jane and Sue Chocolate of Stanley Bridge, PEI. How grandly did the color of these marbleized chocolates fit in with my tea table color scheme! I simply could not resist including them.
A sugar high for days!
I hope you have enjoyed a glimpse into our afternoon teatime! Have a lovely week, everyone!
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