Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Tea Accoutrements

I love afternoon tea -- from a simple cup just for me to a "pull out the stops, polish the silver", formal tea for friends.

One of the things I collect are tea things. From English tea sets (cups, saucers, open sugar, creamer, cake plates and big cake plate) to all of the little English silver things that make having tea such a pleasure.

This afternoon, I packed up my things and off I went to a Victorian bed and breakfast in town to do a program on tea accoutrements for a darling family of 12 ladies -- from grownups to little girls.

My tea things:

Front row: two English pastry forks, two European 5 o'clock spoons, tea spoon (notice the difference in size), lemon fork, cake serving fork
Left hand corner: holder for sugar cubes, English blue glass and silver sugar dish, tea caddy spoon
Middle Back row: Sugar sifter spoon
Right Hand Corner (from the top): tea strainer, tea strainer that fits into a teapot spout, tea ball; 18th century mote spoon
They're all laid out on a set of tea napkins

The English pastry forks are used for tarts and such. One tine is double thick which makes cutting crust easy. I use them all the time for desserts!

Five o'clock spoons are really the spoons used for tea. They're smaller than the teaspoon which is actually too big for a teacup.

The lemon fork is used to serve lemon slices that go into the teacup. (for those that prefer lemon).

The cake serving fork is used to serve slices of cake. It's Victorian and I'd buy another if I could find one.

The sugar sifter spoon is used to sift sugar into the teacup. In Victorian days, sugar was often lumpy -- this spoon ensures that the lumps are added to your cup!

The tea strainer is one that rests on the table and you pick it up when you pour your cup of tea.

The spout tea strainer goes into the spout of the tea pot and swivels. Your tea is poured through it.

The tea ball is filled with tea leaves and after the tea is brewed, it is pulled out. It is silver, like most of them seem to be.

The mote spoon is early and is used to catch stray leaves in tea cups. The pointy end allows you to poke the leaves that clog the spout -- pushing them back into the spout.

The table at the Lyons Mansion set for tea.

It was a fun afternoon.


Marty@A Stroll Thru Life said...

What a fun idea. I'm sure they had a wonderful time. I don't know that much about having tea, but it would be such fun to learn. Hugs, Marty

Karen at Nittany Inspirations said...

I found your post on the silver tea accoutraments very informative. I did not know about some of those piecies. I would have loved to have been at the tea. This sounds like a good program for a mother-daughter banquet. Thanks for sharing.

Elizabeth and Gary said...

I just love the cute lemon fork.I have my Grandmothers sliver, I think I will look for a lemon fork and see what else I might find.
What a fun time, I would have loved to attend your program on tea accoutrements.
Your kitchen is amazing and so pretty!. I just painted inside my kitchen cabinets blue, and I see that yours is blue too. I have always wanted to paint my cabinets white, but Gary likes the oak and so I will leave it oak, but I do love the white.
Enjoy your day,

Ashlee said...

Thank you for stopping by my blog. I love your older home. I am sure it has such great detail and character. I signed up as a follower and I would love if you did the same!

~Ashlee @ Workman Witticisms

Gail said...

Oh my, what a beautiful table for tea! I really enjoyed my visit...thanks for visiting mine and leaving such a nice comment.


nannykim/ spindle cottage said...

Interesting--I still am wondering about straining out the lumps or clumps of sugar since they would dissolve quickly....kind of weird!

marilyn r said...

I think that you have the sugar sifting spoon function backwards: another site states that it is used to keep the big crystals of sugar out of the tea or food.

I love your blog and recipes.

Best regards.