Saturday, November 23, 2013

Tea Room Recipe #46 - Elmwood Inn (Perryville, Kentucky)

I love to see a tiny little bite-sized chocolate treat on a tea tray, so when I came across this recipe for Brownie Tea Cakes, I knew I wanted to try it.

This recipe comes from one of my favorite tea cookbooks, "A Year of Teas at the Elmwood Inn" by Shelley and Bruce Richardson (1994). The legendary Elmwood Inn in Perryville, Kentucky was on my bucket list of tea rooms to visit, but it closed in 2004 before I could get there. Happily, though, the tea room's recipes have been preserved in many books by the Richardsons and of course today they are also known for their own line of teas. Bruce Richardson is well known to readers of Tea Time magazine and other tea publications for the many tea articles he has written over the years. I had the pleasure of meeting him (briefly) at two different tea conferences, and I remember being impressed that such a knowledgeable tea expert was such a down-to-earth guy. I wouldn't have been surprised if he were a tea snob, but that could not have been further from the truth. I have used a scone recipe from this book for years, but this week I decided to try the Brownie Tea Cakes, and they were awesome!

The only thing I did differently was that I used hazelnuts instead of walnuts, and I must say I loved these little chocolate brownie treats! (So did the official Tea With Friends taste tester, by the way.)

Brownie Tea Cakes

3/4 cup butter
2 squares semi-sweet chocolate
1 square unsweetened chocolate
1-3/4 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cocoa
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped (or hazelnuts!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter and chocolate squares over low heat. Remove from heat, add sugar and combine. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla.

Combine flour, cocoa and salt, then add to mixture. Stir with a whisk until mixture is smooth, then add nuts. Spoon batter into paper liners in mini-muffin pan, filling liners 3/4 full. Bake 12-15 minutes. (The recipe says it yields 32 cakes, but I got 42 and I didn't scrimp!)


  1. They look delicious, Angela, and I have that cookbook, so I'll remember your great review of them.

  2. These look delightful or should I say tealightful She was very talented as a pastry chef!

  3. I turn to this book every time I plan a tea menu. And, I am very fortunate to have been to the lovely many times over the years, prior to their closing in July 2004. But, I only live an hour away.

  4. Yummy, and no icing. Usually chocolate treats have icing on which I'm not fond of. I too like tiny treats, we can eat more this way.

  5. Love all of Bruce and Shelley Richardson's books... and have prepared and served many of their recipes. Somehow I missed this one, but will give it a try very soon!

  6. I had the pleasure of seeing Bruce Richardson speak at the Jane Austen Society of North America general meeting for 2013. He really is an excellent speaker!

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! Like Judith, I prefer chocolate treats without icing so this will be something I add to me Pinterest board.

  7. Now this is one of my favorite tea recipe books of all time too. I haven't tried this recipe, but now it will be on the list of those to try.


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