File Size: 2410 KB
Print Length: 80 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Healthy Wealthy nWise Press (July 24, 2014)
Publication Date: July 24, 2014
Sold by: Digital Services LLC
Word Wise: Enabled
Lending: Not Enabled
Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Best Sellers Rank: #151,709 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store) #20 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Special Occasions > Brunch & Tea #21 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Drinks & Beverages > Coffee & Tea #69 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Beverages & Wine > Coffee & Tea
So, which is it? Eh, it may be a bit of both. Yes. Of COURSE I clicked on it because I couldn't resist Downton Abbey in all its drama, costumey goodness and British miniseries excellence. So I came for the Brit costume drama and I stayed for the food. But is it all that?This book has a section on the history of the tea custom (The Duchess of Bedford, who in my opinion should be canonized, couldn't make it to the 10 o'clock formal dinner and ordered tea and little bits of things sent up to her chambers to tide her over the long fast between luncheon and dinner.) The tea section is unfortunately too abbreviated. Yes, there is a discussion of "orange pekoe" --the entire top two leaves of the tea plant, and a brief mention of China, but to be accurate, you should learn about "India or China" meaning being asked if you want Chinese tea, like Keemun or Prince of Wales, or if you want Indian tea (Assam, Darjeeling.) A short discussion of CTC tea (the coarser type of tea you serve to the staff below and frankly, enjoy yourself on a miserable wet day.) I won't knock off a star because there are plenty of tea books but I thought it was a bit skimpy of the author to omit this because it was customary to ask the preference of the guests.The real value of this book is in the recipes for the things-to-go-with-tea, such as several kinds of salmon sandwiches (I like the smoked salmon and dill) and some great chicken sandwiches, one with poached chicken and flavored butter that is like eating Liberty velvet. Surprisingly, no tomato sandwich or cucumber or watercress. These are classic. I like tomato sandwiches.
Wouldn't it be fun to get together with all your friends at 4:00 o'clock every day for a cup of tea and a few sweet treats? This book give the history of afternoon tea, tips on how to prepare the items, and manners that are expected at such an event. I already knew that High Tea involved one that had a meat serving and was something the farm hands had and nothing to do with being more high society than regular afternoon tea, so that was not new to me. But the recipies all sound delicious and some of them might even be something I would make some day. The book is written by a British woman so I had to look up some of the terms and the recipies include measurements in grams as well as ounces. In the US we don't usually measure our ingredients by weighing on a scale but I think if one really wanted to understand the measurements equivelents could be found on the internet.One thing that was not clear was why tea was held at 4pm. Appearantly, some royal person got hungry midday and asked her maid to make her tea and a snack, then started sharing the custom with her friends because she liked to gossip. But it sounds like they didn't have a midday meal like lunch. Maybe she was a late sleeper and her breakfast was late in the morning(?), I don't know. But anyway, tea seemed to be the refreshment break between breakfast and dinner.The author has incorporated family recipies into historical ones and named them after characters in the TV series and that adds a bit of fun to the recipies. She explains that milk was added to the china cups to prevent cracking of the glaze on them so adding milk after the tea was a sign of wealth because crazed cups could be replaced. Who knew?
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