Monday, November 14, 2011

Afternoon Tea And My Mom's Sugar Cookie Recipe:

Afternoon Tea And My Mom's Sugar Cookie Recipe

I collect Old Country Roses China and tea ware..,

 I am joining Wanda Lee and Pam this week for, Teapot And Tea Things Tuesday @

Mom made these cookies every Christmas for as long as I can remember. To be honest, they weren't my favorite, because they were very hard. However, since they were the only sugar cookies I had ever eaten, I asked Mom for the recipe.

The first year of my marriage, I made the cookies, but instead of using margarine, as Mom always did, I used butter. The difference it made in the recipe was phenomenal! In fact they were so good, I was grateful that I lived 4000 miles away from Mom. I didn't want her to taste my version, because she took such pride in her own recipe, and frankly, mine were SO much better, that I didn't want hers to be overshadowed.

Every year I would make them I would say to her, "Well, Mom, I made the sugar cookies, but they just don't taste like yours." I never told her that I used butter, and she would quiz me as to what I might have done wrong. I'd tell her that there was no way that I would be able to bake them like she did. I think she took some pride in being the "Sugar Cookie Queen".

Having said that, I have to admit that my Mom's potato salad was absolutely THE BEST! I couldn't come close to reproducing or improving it. She just had the touch, and she certainly didn't pass that one on to me, or any of my sisters. Mom passed away 7 and 1/2 years ago. I really miss her, and would give anything to sink my teeth into her sugar cookies one more time., even if they were a little firm.

These cookies are absolutely delicious, very moist and flavorful, and they are especially good after a week or two, once the flavor of the nutmeg really becomes pronounced. This makes about 5 dozen cookies, or about 2 1/2 dozen double cookies. I make double cookies which are a round cookie on the bottom, and a cookie of the same circumference but with a small hole in the centre, into which I put a dab of raspberry jam. To give you a word to the wise, these bake up quite large, and need to be watched so that they are baked sufficiently , but are not over-done.

Anyway, here is the recipe so that you can also make them in all their glory; ( below the picture of freshly baked scones with clotted cream and jam; another of my specialties, hence the moniker ~ Scone Queen), but take my advice and use butter!

Please enjoy our little Tuesday, Afternoon Tea respite my friends. ~ Do make this special Sugar cookie recipe soon and curl up with a freshly brewed cup of tea and a good book, enjoying the sweet, slightly crunchy, somewhat soft, buttery delights with just hint of Nutmeg flavor.., Yum!

Compliments of moi, A.K.A./The Scone Queen

Mom's Sugar Cookies

Cream together: 2 cups sugar
1 pound of butter
4 eggs (room temperature)

Combine and then add to the above mixture: 5 cups white flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon nutmeg

Roll into a large ball. Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate until firm to make rolling easier. Roll out 1/4 inch and cut into designs. Bake 350 degrees F. six to seven minutes.

~ Please let me know you came by to visit by kindly leaving a comment. ~ I LOVE HEARING FROM YOU.

Warmest regards, Rose, A.K.A./The Scone Queen

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Cake decorating course on making roses:

Hello there,

I'm going to happily join you for tea today, with just a little post.

Still struggling with leg and foot problems, but I did want to share some more pictures of my cake decorating journey.  This is the picture of cupcakes that I decorated one day after learning to do the icing roses, and you can see that with just a little extra practice, technique gets better.  Practice makes 'perfect-er', if not yet perfect!

Happy Tuesday tea day my friends!

Getting to know each other. A list of ten fun facts concerning myself:  MMMMMmmmmm..... let me see..... what can I say?

1.  I am an avid collector of many beautiful things like  teacups, bears of every persuasion, (except live ones!) blue and white china, teapots, children's books, and anything else that takes my fancy.
2. I met the man of my dreams when I was a mere 17 years old and married  him 29 years later, a first marriage for both of us.
3.  I am allergic to lobster.
4.  I am the middle child of seven.
5.  It is a desire of mine to own 25 pairs of lovely, wearable shoes, no small feat (feet!?!) considering I have a size 11 quadruple E foot and have to have my shoes custom made.
6.  I will eat almost any food at least once to see if I like it, except for bugs or tripe, the sight of which makes my skin crawl, and I can't imagine putting it in my mouth. 
7. Amethyst is both my birthstone and my favorite gem. followed closely by diamonds, and pearls. 
8.  I enjoy quilling, which is a craft comprised of hand-curled strips of paper glued together to form a design that looks very much like wrought-iron work.
9.  I am a strawberry blonde who, at 53, does not have to dye her hair.
10 I adore bright red lipstick, even though I can't wear it myself.

THAT WAS ARDUOUSLY DIFFICULT.  If there was a number 11, it would be that I love using big, bold and unusual words. Phew, that is all I have in me today!  Until next time, dear bloggerites!

What about you?

Perhaps some tea trivia;

What teas and foods do you like?

P. S. ~ I'm so sorry my dear blog friends, yet due to my health issues at times, and also my work schedule, I'm not always able to visit you , yet I thank you very much for visiting me!

Warmest regards,
Rose, a.k.a./ Scone Queen

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Pumpkin Scones & Afternoon Tea:

Welcome to another delightful, 'Tuesday  Teatime In blogland'!

This week I am joining in with these tea parties;

'Teapot And Tea Things Tuesday' @ and also @

.., And also @  for  'Tuesday Tea For Two'.

And also for  Teatime Tuesday ,  at dear Lady Katherine's which is held weekly  @

If the fact that I adore Tea time is not evident by the existence of
this blog, one need look no further than my repeated afternoon tea parties!
In my life there is always room for tea!     
I also very much enjoy collecting lovely antique teacups and teapots!

Isn't this the lovliest cozy Inn? ~ What a lovely place to enjoy afternoon tea!..,

Another delightful recipe for you to enjoy my friends:

Pumpkin Scones

Pumpkin gives a truly delightful taste to Scones. The Pumpkin adds a richness and moistness which is just delicious. Of course they are also that very pretty pale orange Pumpkin colour.


Two cups self raising flour
1/2 cup cooked, mashed Pumpkin
1/3 cup Sugar
2 Tblspns Butter
I Egg
1/4 tspn Salt
1/3 Cup Milk


Preheat your oven to a hot 200 degrees c
Cream the Butter and Sugar. Add the Egg, beating well. Add the mashed Pumpkin.

Sift the Flour and Salt twice and then add alternatively to the Scone mix with the Milk. You may or may not use all of the Milk. It will depend on the moistness of the Pumpkin. You should end up with a moist dough.

Knead slightly on a floured surface and then roll out to a one inch thickness. Cut out and place on your greased and floured baking tray. Brush the tops with a little Milk. Bake in the hot oven until just browned. Wrap in a tea towel after removing the Scones from the oven.

You may serve warm with *Maple and Cinnamon Butter or *Orange Marmalade Butter.

*(To make flavoured butters simply add the above ingredients according to taste to softened Butter)..,


Warmest regards from Rose ~ a.k.a./Scone Queen

~ I always so enjoy your comments , so please kindly leave me a comment and I shall visit you in return just as soon as I'm able..,   ~ Thanks so much for all of your lovely comments the week before last week!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Finally Back in Blogland!

Hello Dear Readers,

I have been so long away!  Excuse my looooong absence.  It could hardly be called a blog nap, it was so interminable!It probably qualifies for a full-on blog coma!  But I am back for a little while at least!.The picture directly below was my gift to a friend; decorated sugar cubes.  They are not the most accomplished, but given with a loving heart.

Why couldn't mine look like this?  Perhaps with practice!

Finally, dear Readers a recipe for a gluten-free chocolate cake that is to die for.  Try it, and I can almost guarantee that you will love it, despite the unusual ingredient!

Garbanzo Bean Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

1- 19 oz. can of garbonzo beans ( chick peas) drained and rinsed
4 eggs
3/4 c. white sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 and 1/2 c. semi sweet chocolate chips melted in the microwave

 Preheat oven to 350 degree F.  Grease and flour a 9 inch cake pan with gluten free flour.  In food processor or blender combine the garbonzo beans and eggs and puree until smooth.  Add white sugar and baking powder. Pulse and scrap down the sides of the food processor until the ingredients are well combined.  Melt  chocolate chips in the microwave using a microwave-safe  bowl, stirring every twenty seconds until completely melted.  Add to the bean mixture and combine until well blended.  Pour into prepared pan and place in preheated oven for 35-45 minutes.  Check the cake at 35 minutes by inserting a tester into the center.  When it comes out clean, remove from the oven and let rest on a cake rack for 15 minutes before turning out to cool.  Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve warm or cold.  Yummy!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Valentines Tea Party: Teatime In Blogland:

Happy Valentines dear fellow blogging friends!

Well, after many false starts, the Valentine Tree is up and sparkling. To be honest, this year it was almost a no-show. Struggling as I have recently with ill health, I attempted to put the lights on the tree to no avail..,

Nothing seemed to look quite right..,

My dear husband is a consummate tree-decorator who can string a full-sized tree in less than an hour, and my tiny Valentine version would take him less than 20 minutes, but his discretionary time is at a premium, so the tree stood desolate for well over a week. Finally, this last Saturday, we tackled it together; Eric strung the lights and I arranged the antique Valentines, blown glass hearts, and jewel-toned feather-festooned birds.

Much as I was tempted to pack the entire idea in for the season, I am so glad I didn't! Along with the fireplace mantle which now displays antique Valentines, burgundy glittered hearts, frosted fruit and white lights, "the little tree that almost wasn't" lights up its tiny corner of my world with warmth and welcome.

Canadian winters , and dull, rainy, long British Columbian's ones in-particular can dampen and depress even the bravest heart. The bustle and stress of Christmas preparations and entertaining is such that a person barely has the time or energy to really enjoy and embrace the beautiful holiday decorations that traditionally bedeck our homes.

In a thrice, all is packed away, and the house seems bereft. While December seems to fly by, with all its retail, social and religious busy-ness, January and February are the longest months, and are therefore, (in my humble opinion) much in need of a special touch. ~  I can think of nothing better than the anticipation of celebrating the relationships that make our lives worth living....relationships of love.

To that end, it has become a tradition with me and my dear friend, Wanda Lee to celebrate the patron saint of love, by decorating a tree in his esteemed honor, and entertaining the people we love at a Valentine Tea.

Initially for me, decorating the tree was simply a matter of taking all the overtly-Christmas type ornaments from the traditional taunembaum, and replacing them with hearts and Victorian-inspired paper ephemera. ~ However, when Wanda Lee, (a.k.a./Paper Princess), started  to decorate her own Valentines tree; she began by creating her own, Valentines paper ephemera collection of pretty Valentines Tree ornaments and invited me to do so as well; a new idea and tradition was born !..,

As the years went on though, we felt that we both needed to take down the larger one in favour of something a bit smaller that would allow me to restore our living rooms somewhat, to it's pre-holiday order.

The Valentine Tree in its present form took shape on my beloved Grandmother's oak occasional table. Without exception, my guests remark on its inviting beauty.

They are all so delighted to be invited to a lovingly-prepared afternoon tea resplendent with savory sandwiches, and decadent sweets, accompanied by chocolate-dipped strawberries, clotted cream, lemon curd and raspberry preserves. Pleasant conversations over steaming bowls of aromatic tea and coffee become the stuff from which fond memories are created and treasured. Now, dear reader, perhaps you are thinking that all this sounds just a bit far-fetched and (heaven forbid!) time consuming, but as the old saying goes, "what is worth doing, is worth doing well." The meagre time spent in preparation yields a multitude of fortuitous dividends.

While Valentine's Day is often accused of being a holiday invented by Hallmark, I believe that , like everything else, it is what you choose to make it. I have decided to bask in the warmth of love and friendship through offering my home as a place to serve those who are dearest to me, and those whom I hope will become dear to me in time. Valentine's Day gives me this opportunity and I gladly embrace it.

~Below, are some pictures of us as we played games and enjoyed our Valentines afternoon tea..,

This week I am joining in with these tea parties; the 41st , 'Teapot And Tea Things Tuesday' @ and also @

.., And also @  for the 69th, 'Tuesday Tea For Two',
I am also linking in with Martha and Terri's, Teacup Tuesday this week @

And the lovely,  Teatime Tuesday ,  at dear Lady Katherine's which is held weekly  @

And also with dear Sandi for TeaTime Tuesday @

I am also joining in for the first time with : for her delightful

new blogparty /meme: 'Wow Us Wednesdays' 

Tea guests Dorothy (chintz polo shirt) and Kathleen (black cardigan and chintz blouse) survey the desert table...,

Directly in front of the ladies on the tea table are chocolate-dipped shortbread heart cookies alternated with decadent chocolate-dipped strawberries. Toward the front is clotted cream encircled by freshly baked English Scones accompanied by Raspberry Jam. At table center is a heavenly Chocolate Pound Cake and Skor-Bar Trifle.

At the back of the table sits the meticulously-polished Silver Service ready to dispense two types of delicious tea, the ubiquitous Orange Pekoe, and a new favorite, Chocolate Dessert Tea ( a perfect accompaniment to all things Chocolate!)as well as a rich, dark brewed coffee. (Lower-Upper Left)..,

The first course in an afternoon tea is a variety of savouries, consisting of sandwiches (egg salad, curried chicken, cucumber with cream cheese and dill, and for those with a sweet tooth, the ever-popular cherry-cheese sandwich.) Also served was a spinach dip accompanied with rice crackers and miniature toast-point ramekins., as well as tuna mushroom toastades. Each dish was garnished with a variety of crudites and/or grapes).

(Lower left), More desserts are featured on a lovely silver tray. Starting from the left are butterscotch squares, followed by chocolate, oatmeal and coconut macaroons, lemon-curd shortbread tartlets and Nova Scotia's famous Cape Breton Pork Pies (not REALLY made of pork but a to-die-for puree of cooked dates, demerara sugar and lemon ensconced in a shortbread tartlet, and topped with a diminutive dollop of maple syrup butter cream. My husband's hands-down favorite!)

(Below) Elisia can always be depended upon to help out in the kitchen. What a gem of a friend!

(Immediately above): Rose, a.k.a./ Scone Queen, ( me), putting the final touches on the tuna-mushroom tostades.

Rose's Tea Scones
Set oven to 375 or 400 degrees F. (depending on how hot your oven bakes)
Please read through the Complete Listing of Ingredients before you start!
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking POWDER
1 teaspoon salt
Optional Ingredients
Add One of the following four options
1/2 c. currants soaked in hot water and drained once they are plumped
1/2 cup raisins ( if they are really dry you can soak and drain these as well)
1/2 cup dried apricots cut into the size of raisins, along with 1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup (one stick) extremely cold butter cut into eight pieces
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg (room temperature)
1 teaspoon real vanilla
enough homogenized milk or cereal cream to make 1 cup of liquid when combined with the egg and vanilla
Combine the following ingredients using a wire whisk.
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
Reserve 2 tblsps of the flour mixture.
Then, using a pastry cutter, cut into the remaining flour mixture 1/2 c ( 1 stick) very cold butter (which has been cut into eight large pieces) until it looks like coarse oatmeal.
In a small bowl, add the 2 tablespoons of reserved flour mixture to one of the OPTIONAL ingredients, making sure to coat them thoroughly.
Add the optional ingredients gently to the rest of the flour and butter mixture.
Gently add 1/4 cup granulated sugar
In a 2 cup measuring cup, lightly beat one room temperature egg. Add to that 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and enough homogenized milk (or cereal cream) to make one cup of liquid.
Using a fork, add 1/3 of the wet ingredients to the flour,butter, optional ingredient, sugar mixture, blending gently, but thoroughly. Add the next 1/3, blending gently, but thoroughly.and the final 1/3 blending gently until it incorporated. You should still be able to see small bits of butter in the dough. Do not over mix!
Turn the mixture onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently 4 or five times until it just holds together. Use a VERY GENTLE HAND when kneading the scones. Pat gently into a 1 1/2 high rectangle and cut into 8 large rounds or 12 smaller rounds. Place scones in a 9x9 ungreased square cake pan. Bake until the scones are a medium golden brown. (Larger scones take longer to bake than smaller ones!) Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes, before turning them out and separating them Serve warm with clotted cream and jam., or at room temperature later in the day. These are best when they are eaten on the day they are made. ~ Bon Apetit!

Are you hungry yet?.., Yum!

Warmest regards, Rose, (a.k.a./ Scone Queen)

Thanks for visiting! ~ Kindly leave a comment because I so very much enjoy hearing from you dear blog friends! ~ ( I have been unwell and also as I have been recovering, exceedingly busy, so I apopolgize for not having been able to blog and /or visit as of the last while).

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Another cake Decoerating Course; Tuesday Tea Time:

 Welcome!.., I'm so delighted that you came by to share a cup of Rosey Lee and some cake my friends! 

Tea and 'cake' anyone?

Some fresh cherries as well, perhaps?.., Yum!

Last Monday Night I completed my second Wilton Cake Decorating Course.  It was Fondant and Gum Paste Decorating.  My!  What fun and excitement!  I just wanted to share with you my final cake, which I must confess was a fake cake made of Styrofoam!  I couldn't countenance putting a real cake under fondant and gum paste I had been working on for an entire month.  It hardly seemed right since I am sure it wouldn't have been too sanitary!   But I am pleased with the final outcome, especially the roses.  I am, dear readers, a wee bit dyslexic, and it takes a lot of effort for me to learn from written instructions.  Thus, the roses, which we had to learn from copiously reading our text books, were quite a challenge. 

The good news is, that in my fumbling about, I actually created a rose quite different from the one being taught in the book.  It is a tighter rose and more streamlined than the lovelyfrilly one  in the Wilton Book.  Truth is I like them both, and am so glad that my struggle created something quite lovely.  Of course it was also quite exciting for me to finally "get" what the book was illustrating, after much effort. 

I do hope you enjoy the pictures.  I value your comments as well. ~ May I encourage you to take the Wilton courses.  They are accessible to just about anyone.  One thing that kept me from taking the plunge was the fact the that cost of the course is not advertised.  I took this to mean that it would be prohibitive, but in fact the cost of the actual course is quite minimal, and I even got 50% off of the original cost of it. What adds up is the cost of materials, but if you are truly interested in cake decorating, it is an investment that bring forth many positive dividends and will last you for years and years.  As for the courses' difficulty, If I can do them, anyone can.  The fondant and gum paste course is just wonderful and working with those materials is magical. ~ Try it! ~ I know you will be delighted with the skills you will easily acquire. 

I love hearing from you  dear blog friends, so kindly leave a comment..,

Hugs from Scone Queen