Thursday, August 21, 2014

SUMMER TEA

Summer is so short here in the U.P. (Upper Peninsula) of Michigan, and this year, it seemed even shorter.  We had an unusually long, cold winter, cool spring, and not so hot summer. With summer coming to an end soon, I did a quick rewind to what I look forward to doing in the summer, and what hadn't I done yet.
All winter, I long to sit in my front porch, only accessible in the summer as it is not heated. And of course, I look forward to having a summer tea. The front porch has been a quiet corner to read or take a nap, so now was the time to have the summer tea.  A couple of tea-loving friends are teachers and will be going back to their classroom next week, August 28, so time was of the essence.  I'm still meeting people who want to come to tea, so I sent a note to a few friends and soon-to-be new friends, inviting them to a summer tea.

There is an abundance of ripe fruit right now - wild blueberries and raspberries, and  I added nectarines and kiwi.


I chose a colorful hand-embroidered white table cloth, colorful napkins, and chose my fruit-patterned dishes and cups.

Here is the menu, some of which is from the latest issue of Tea Time Magazine and my own boards on Pinterest.  The teas are Rose Raspberry (Downton Abbey) and Blackberry Sage.


I made biscuit "cones" out of crescent rolls, by making a cone shape out of aluminum foil, and wrapping the dough around it.  The filling was a spread made from local, fresh salmon, cream cheese and sour cream; and a golden cherry tomato from my garden.  I laid each salmon biscuit on a leaf of romaine lettuce.  


I don't believe its a tea party without serving scones and mock devonshire cream. This is the first time I made the blueberry thyme scones, two ingredients I wondered about pairing together.  But the recipe in the lastest issue of Tea Time Magazine, again, proved to be wonderful!  I also learned a new technique from this recipe that keeps the blueberries mostly whole, which holds in the flavor.

Start by putting half the blueberries on one side of the dough, and fold the dough over, gently kneading or rolling them in.  Finish by adding the remaining blueberries to the dough and repeating the kneading and rolling.



Fruit Cup: to enhance the fruit with big flavor, combine fresh chopped fruit and berries in a bowl, mixing just to blend.  Add enough berry flavor wine cooler to cover the fruit, and refrigerate for several hours or over night.  Strain the fruit, saving the juice/wine liquid. (this makes a great drink) I served the fruit cup in double shot glasses with a little dollup of mock devonshire cream on top.


Dessert was a mini ice cream cone filled with a mock cheese cake filling, just like a little ice cream cone (!), and a mini pink cake heart with chocolate ganache drizzled on top.


I packaged raspberry muffins for my guests to take home.  They were baked in paper/cardboard cups, which are available at World Market stores.


Thanks to friends Marsha N. and Sandy A. and their families' estates, I now have a collection of hats for my guests to choose from.


Here's to you, teachers - Lori and Louise; and friends - Darleen, Wendy and Nancy. Thanks for sharing a summer afternoon tea. It was a delight!




2 comments:

  1. Sue, thank you so much for inviting me to the tea this afternoon...I had such an enjoyable time! ...you did a lovely job on everything!! I love tea....it is calming to me. My grandma and I spent many hours enjoying our tea...I have many pleasant memories. I hope that you will have room for me at some of your future teas. Thanks for everything!

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  2. Thank you so much for today! I loved it!

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