Lady J. was on a Mediterranean cruise that took her to a shop in Spain where she found a teaspoon with a flamenco dancer on its handle. She was so enchanted by it that she wanted to buy a few more but there was only one lonely spoon available. As Lady J. was leaving the shop, the excited owner called her back, “Señora! Señora!” He rummaged through a drawer and managed to produce exactly 7 more spoons for a total of 8 spoons! Lady J. couldn’t believe her luck and snatched up the entire lot. This is how a special teaspoon inspired a theme for an afternoon tea!
“Bienvenido! You are cordially invited to a Spanish Tea! Come dressed with Spanish flair! Add a rose, fan, Mantillla shawl and/or peineta and feel like you’re in Spain!”
After sharing her story of how a teaspoon inspired her creative spirit, Lady J. wanted us to share a creative project we’d worked on in the past or were currently working on. We were all very impressed to hear each other share about our creative endeavors in areas such as sewing, scrapbooking, making memories, baking, luncheons, home organization, and music!
Lady J. came up with a wonderful vegetarian Spanish tapas style menu and picked some delicious herbal teas for a siesta. Lady J. served an iced hibiscus sangria (non-alcoholic) and 2 hot teas from Teavana: CocoCaramel Sea Salt (dulce de leche, anyone?) and Berry kiwi colada.
Sopa de ajo
(Adapted from many recipes by Lady Henni)
4 c. veggie stock (or other stock/broth)
1 c. bread cubes (1/2″ cubes, rustic loaf of crusty bread)
10 cloves of garlic, minced
3 eggs, slightly beaten (yolks broken up and slightly mixed with whites)*
1 1/2 tsp. smoked Spanish paprika
Pinch of saffron threads
1/4 tsp. black pepper (optional)
Chopped red and yellow bell peppers for garnish (Viva España!)
Heat up some olive oil and add bread cubes. When bread is slightly browned, add minced garlic and stir until garlic is fragrant. Add veggie broth, saffron, paprika, and black pepper (if using). Bring the soup to a boil and pour eggs into the soup slowly in a stream. Stir the soup while the eggs cook. Serve immediately. Garnish with chopped red and yellow peppers and parsley.
* If desired, you can poach the eggs whole instead of breaking them up.
Pan con Tomate
(Recipe as taught by my friend S.)
Cut a crusty loaf of bread into small pieces and toast the bread. Rub a clove of garlic on the surface of the bread. Cut a ripe tomato in half and rub the open half onto the surface of the bread making sure to get tomato goodness and juices on the bread. Discard the tomato skin. Drizzle bread with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt. Enjoy!
Churro oat scones
(From the kitchen of Lady S.)
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. oat flour
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. (1 stick) very cold butter cut into small cubes or grated on a box grater
2/3 c. cream
Topping: 3 Tbsp. sugar mixed with 1 tsp. cinnamon
Sift together dry ingredients. Using a pastry blender, fork, or food processor, add butter. Work until texture is like lumpy oatmeal being careful not to overmix butter. Add cream and work just enough for dough to come together into a ball. Flatten and roll into a 1 inch thick circle (about 9″ in diameter) and cut into 8 wedges. Sprinkle with cinnamon/sugar topping. Use a flat spatula to place scones 2 inches apart on a parchment lined baking sheet (these scones spread a bit so don’t put them too close together!). Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 mins.
Serve with clotted cream or Devonshire cream, fudge sauce, dulce de leche, chocolate cream, caramel sauce, lemon curd, etc.
After this wonderful feast, Lady T. declared she was so full she could not eat another bite and would have to skip dinner. I laughed at her misfortune but, to my chagrin, later discovered that I too could not eat another bite so no dinner for me either! Thank you Lady J. for hosting an unforgettable afternoon! My only regret was that I couldn’t take a siesta in your garden after the tea. 🙂
La comida a reposar; y la cena a pasear.
(After dinner rest a while, after supper walk a mile)