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.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Three Courses for Tea

Tea time is always important at Linderhof . . . and every afternoon I stop at half past three for a pot of tea and a treat.

But I also enjoy having company for tea -- teas based on the teas I enjoyed at the Ritz in London and the Pump Room in Bath -- three course teas starting with sandwiches, scones and cream and jam and finally sweets.

I'm joining Laura at Decor to Adore for High Tea this Wednesday.

What can be better than joining a group of ladies for tea!!!

This tea took place last year and I think that sometime soon, when my friends come, lunch should be tea again!

Three friends of mine come to lunch at Linderhof once a month. It's a decade old tradition -- these three friends joining me for lunch. What is great is that I get to try new recipes and they get to eat new foods.

Today was our regular "Lunch" but instead of lunch I decided to have an afternoon tea. A traditional three course afternoon tea -- a tea that should have been at half past three but one that we had at straight up noon!
I set the tea table with my Spode and Wedgewood and, of course, the silver teapot.
As is proper -- tea is served on the three tiered curate -- sandwiches on the bottom, then scones and then sweets. A seed cake is on a pedastal cake stand.
The tea cups and plates -- Spode Famille Rose -- I've had it for a long time but haven't used it much prefering instead my blue and white. I set the table properly -- with a tea plate, the napkin and then the tea cup and saucer on top.
Sandwiches first -- traditional cucumber (bread, butter, sliced cucumber and salt and pepper) and mixed olive tea sandwiches from The Watts Tea Shop via Savoring Time in the Kitchen -- a daily read of Linderhof.
In the middle of the curate, freshly made scones. I love Ina Garten's receipe -- they make lovely scones -- whether in triangles or in rounds which is what we always had in England. Served, of course, with real Clotted Cream and my homemade strawberry jam.
And at the top of the curate -- tarts -- strawberry tarts with patisserie cream and lemon curd tarts topped with a pansy.

And, in addition, a seed cake -- a traditional British cake for afternoon tea. Mine was made with poppy seeds and my guests pronounced it stupendous!

The curate, filled with tea goodies!

And at the end of the afternoon . . . . the pot is empty, the cups are empty and we feel sated. It was a grand afternoon tea!


On Crooked Creek said...

What a lovely tea on the prairie! I adore your lace vintage tablecloth. Setting it on the diagonal really showcases the delicate detail. It is from you, dear friend, that I learned the proper order to place my tea items on the curate. You have given me such valuable information through these last few months. I'm sure that your friends for your luncheon turned tea were as pleased as could be. Thank you for such a lovely post!

The Charm of Home said...

That looks fabulous! I will have to try Ina's scones. The scone recipe I used was really good, but I forgot the baking powder and the scones are flat. I always love to visit you on these most traditional things such as tea. I know you are an expert! Lunch and tea sound like a perfect afternoon.

From the Kitchen said...

Simply perfect!!


my cup of tea said...

Everything looks so beautiful and delicious! You do set a beautiful table! Thank you for sharing!

Lynn said...

Oh so pretty! Lovin' your china:@)

xinex said...

The food looks so delish, making me hungry this early. And they are just a nice addition to this stunning set up. Love the tea cup set and the 3 tiered tray.

Mom in High Heels said...

I want to come have tea with you! It looks lovely and delicious!

Pondside said...

I think that, after reading this post, that it must be time for tea at The White Heather. Your tea table closely resembled that at my favorite tea room!

Johanna Gehrlein said...

I would love to have tea on this wonderful table. The stand is very adorable and the food looks so yummy. Beautiful table.
Greetings, Johanna

Ceekay-THINKIN of HOME said...

Beautiful...but I love that tablecloth! gorgeous!

Lorrie said...

Mmm, tea time on the prairie would be a delight!

Rosemary said...

Absolutely delightful! Loved all the photos.

bj said...

Oh, Martha, this is, indeed, a grand tea. The absolute ONLY thing missing

You do have the prettiest things...and you are so good at how to use them properly. I am so haphazard in everything I do. I know I seldom do things RIGHT but it is so fun playing tea, I just pretend all is right on my table.:))

Southerncook said...

I know you love your blue and white but I am particularly fond of this pattern. Your Tea sounds fabulous too. Oh how I would love to join you for tea.


Decor To Adore said...

Oh my goodness I am overcome with all of the loveliness!

Your lace tablecloth is just gorgeous!

I have to say that all of your tea time treats are nothing short of spectacular!

From the bottom of my heart, thank you SO very much for linking up.

Pam of Eastlake Victorian said...


Your posts on entertaining are always spectacular! What a beautiful tea you had. I love the way your table is set. The finger sandwiches, scones and tarts look delicious! I also love the way you use edible flowers. I'd love to know what's in your poppy seed cake!

Thanks for all your inspirational posts. : )


Martha said...

Poppy seeds!!!! LOL!!!!!

Actually it is a poppy seed muffin mix with more poppy seeds added (and added lemon zest) baked in a 8 or 9 inch cake pan. (I was too busy making sandwiches and tarts to make the cake from scratch -- and the muffin mix was great for a one layer cake -- the guests said it was fabulous!)

My Cottage Charm said...

Martha your table is just lovely! You are more than welcome to drop in and have tea with me anytime you're in KY. :) (might be a pretty good drive from Kansas though) :)
Have a great day!
PS...your food was making my mouth water! :)

Chari at Happy To Design said...

Hi Martha...

What have a monthly luncheon date with dear friends! Your tea turned out fabulous! You set a lovely table, my friend! I love that Spode china pattern! It's always fun to change things up a least once in awhile! Hehe! Ohhh my...and what scrumptious treats you treated your dear friends with! It all looks sooo good and I'm hungry right now! It is 3pm...I bet you are about ready to take you afternoon tea. The poppy seed cake really turned out pretty..sound yummy as well! Thank you so much for sharing your tea luncheon with us for the party today!

I also wanted to thank you for stopping by my place for a visit! I enjoyed your sweet note, my friend!

Warmest wishes,
Chari @Happy To Design

Anonymous said...

I wish I was your friend! :)

Natasha in Oz said...

You sure do know how to spoil your guests! It is 4pm here and I am just about to have my afternoon cuppa...I wish I sipping it our of those divine spode teacups though!

Best wishes always,

Diann said...

Hi Martha! Your tea is just beautiful! love the pretty dishes and all the lovely accessories! And the food looks so inviting!

Kimberly said...

Oh. Such loveliness. I have to do this soon. We've just moved and I am still unpacking my tea treasures.

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

This is just what I imagine when I think of tea! There is something special about a trip to Linderhof, and especially today with the table set for tea!
I love the silver, the curate filled with scrumptious goodies and of course the pretty lace edged tablcloth.
I hope one of those places was set for me, because I would have loved to be part of your girlfriends tea!
Beautiful and traditional... and perfect!

Lottie said...

Martha, I have loved all your posts, but this one I can taste all three courses! Wonderful!

Lottie said...

PS I can almost taste the seed cake, too! Wonderful