My goal, really, is rather simple: I'd like to read everything ever written on the topic of tea and teatime. Is that so much to ask? Few things make me happier than learning about a new publication on the topic of tea, and last week I was visiting the website mrmagazine.com, which regularly announces new magazine releases, and learned of this one, English Tea & Cakes.
I found a single copy left at my local Barnes & Noble. Interestingly enough, when I got home with it, one of the pages contained crumbs, and my husband surmised that someone probably read it in the store's café while eating a snack. I don't know whether or not that person enjoyed my new magazine, but I sure did! This 114-page magazine is printed on thick paper and contains a wealth of information, recipes and lovely photography. Here, for example, is the feature on Blackberry Teabread. This bread very much appeals to me, and I was also charmed by the appearance of that pretty chintz-handled tea knife at left of the tea bread. I also learned something just by reading the description for this loaf: "Made with freshly harvested hedgerow berries, this tea loaf from Trelissick in Cornwall makes a delicious change from more traditional fruited breads. The garden here was created by Ronald Copeland who was chairman, and later managing director, of the Spode china factory. Many of the flowers that flourish in the mild Cornish air were the inspiration for the floral designs produced at the works."
This magazine also contains history and how-to's, including some suggestions for Tea Party Menus. But there's so much more! In the article on tea destinations, I learned one of the Top 5 London Favourites, at least according to this publication, is Liberty and Co. I bought needlework there but somehow missed out on knowing they have a café and serve afternoon tea! The recipes, though, are the best reason to get hold of this issue. Simnel Cake, for instance, I'd heard of, but I did not know this traditional cake made at Easter has 11 balls of marzipan symbolizing the 12 apostles minus Judas. Must learn more about this! There are also recipes for such English treats as Ginger & Treacle Scones, Bath Buns and Cornish Splits. And if you can't find a copy at your local bookstore, check eBay, where I found a couple of copies selling for about half of the $12.99 I (rather happily) paid for mine!