Hello hello! Well, it's Father's Day this Sunday, and for those of you celebrating, I hope you have something fun planned! My parents will be travelling this weekend, so we decided to do our celebration a week early. I prepared a fancy afternoon tea at our place! I thought a homemade meal would be more personal than a restaurant, and I knew my dad has really wanted to have a high tea for some time - he's really into the sandwiches, for some reason! I know, the sandwiches! Every time I mention scones, or go to a high tea and show him the photos, he keeps saying how much he loves the sandwiches. (I am all about the scones, but each to their own!)
An Afternoon Tea for Four
Egg and Cress Finger Sandwiches
Cucumber Finger Sandwiches
Pão de Queijo (Brazilian Cheese Bread)
Mini Blueberry Tarts
Date and Plain Scones
Raspberry Jam, Clotted Cream, Fresh Raspberries
Dom Perignon 2006 Champagne
English Breakfast Tea
I made quite a few different things for the tea, and I really relished the opportunity to get into the kitchen and bake! I've been really busy lately and haven't had much time to cook for pleasure. It was so lovely spending Sunday morning pottering around the kitchen. Let's take a look!
|Scones ready for the oven|
Scones! I used my recipe for date scones (really, Belinda Jeffrey's recipe), and did half plain, half date. You can (just) see in the photo below that there was also clotted cream, raspberry jam, and some fresh strawberries to go with.
I know tiers are traditional for afternoon tea, but I always find them a bit tricky to manoeuvre, and I thought it looked so lovely to have all the food laid out generously on the coffee table. (Or should it be, "tea table"?)
To drink, we cracked open a bottle of Dom Pérignon 2006 (which Dad actually gifted us a few weeks ago), and put on a pot of English Breakfast tea. How gorgeous is the teapot? It's a Weekend in Budapest from T2, and the lovely April and Laik gifted it to Sandra for her birthday this year!
|Pão de Queijo|
For a warm savoury nibble, I heated up some pão de queijo (Brazilian cheese breads) that I'd previously made and kept in the freezer. I use Nigella's recipe from Simply Nigella, and use a mixture of cheeses (cheddar, Parmesan, anything strong I have in the fridge) rather than just Parmesan. They take a while to make, so I always make a huge batch and freeze them. They defrost beautifully in the oven, and are always rapturously received. Bonus: they pair amazingly with champagne!
|Egg sandwiches, cucumber sandwiches|
For the sandwiches, I went classic, with egg and cress sandwiches, and cucumber sandwiches, and used the softest, fluffiest white bread. (These were both requested by my dad! He says these simple sandwiches remind him of his childhood). I just winged the recipe for these and they both turned out great! I'll write up the recipes and share with you soon.
Scones! This time I did an egg-yolk glaze for a shiny golden top. They turned out super fluffy, hooray! (Here's the recipe).
|Mini blueberry tarts|
I wanted another little sweet treat, and I thought something with fresh fruit would complement the otherwise brown-and-carbolicious menu. I had some rich shortcrust pastry in the freezer (from a previous cherry pie that I'd baked), so I defrosted it, rolled it out and baked it in a mini muffin tray. I made a vanilla crème anglaise and filled the tartlets with it, and then topped it with fresh blueberries. They were fiddly to make, but so cute! You can see I barely fit two-or-three blueberries on the tartlets - one perfect little mouthful. (Recipe to come!)
The tea went really well - it was a really relaxed afternoon, full of deliciousness! If you haven't decided what to do for Father's Day yet, can I suggest an afternoon tea? You won't need to deal with crowds or inflated prices at cafes or restaurants, and if you enjoy baking like I do, it'll be heaps of fun! (Of course, you could easily bake the scones, and purchase other sweets or savouries if that makes your life easier!)
Happy Father's Day to my amazing dad!