Tag Archives: Afternoon Tea

Sweets for my sweets

Just under a fortnight ago, we opened the doors to the Manor for our first afternoon tea since January and we were super excited! Using the beautiful Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh book, Sweet as our inspiration, we took really went to town and whipped up eight sweet treats for our guests. Needless to say we did offer up boxes to take away the uneaten cakes…

Our guests were offered a welcome drink of pomegranate tea fizz – this was deliciously sweet and fruity pomegranate tea from T2, combined with sparkling prosecco. The combo really worked and could be a great alternative to bucks fizz at Christmas!

We didn’t avoid savoury dishes completely – instead offering up a smaller selection to whet the appetite. These included some pan fried corn cakes, topped with tomato salsa and a fried egg. A spicy, tangy mouthful which was brought together nicely by the soft egg yolk. The next savoury wasn’t actually Ottolenghi inspired, but more Nigella with our brie, fig and Parma Ham toastie. A delightful combination of creamy, salty and sweet!

Our final savoury was a beautiful aubergine tart that Dan’s made before and couldn’t resist whipping up again as it’s so reliable and tasty. Homemade puff pastry encased baba ghanoush, griddled rounds of aubergine, roasted wedges of aubergine, halloumi cheese and a drizzle of mint, honey, preserved lemons, chilli and walnut syrup – literally all the flavours in one tart!

So, onto the onslaught of sweet delights! First up were some smaller bites, starting with little rhubarb and custard yo-yos, which were basically custard powder shortbreads with a sweet rhubarb butter cream. Homemade flaky pastry cases filled with a chai custard and topped with a burnt sugar brulee. And an off-menu extra of tahini and halva brownies – all gooey and not overly sweet due to the nuttiness of the sesame paste.

Next up were little palate cleansers – servings of kafir lime possets topped with a papaya salad. These weren’t as sharp as a traditional posset but the tropical salad worked well to cut through the cream.

Moving onto the “cake” menu were a trio of bakes, starting with some naughty banana cakes topped with a rum caramel. These pretty little bundts were basically a cross between banana bread and sticky toffee pudding. We added a bit of butter to the caramel sauce to make it even more luxurious.

Next were the Persian Love Cakes – legend has it that a young woman was madly in love with a Persian prince and in an attempt to win his love, made him a cake packed with magical love powers. Now we can’t say there was any love in the room that afternoon, but the cakes, heavy with nutmeg and almonds did bring some joy to our guests!

The last in the trio of cakes were little hazelnut, ricotta and chocolate cakes. Individual baked cheesecakes of ricotta, ground hazelnuts and chocolate, topped with a shiny chocolate glaze and roasted hazelnuts. Nutella fans will love this one!

If this wasn’t enough, then our finale was a massive blackberry and peach meringue roulade! A crispy yet pillowy and chewy meringue, slathered in cream and fruit and then rolled and covered in more cream and fruit. A brilliant take on a classic dessert.

Safe to say our guests were full and happy. We may have tipped them over the edge a little, but our motto has always been it’s better looking at it than for it!

Our next events are in just over a weeks’ time, where we’ve improved our theme from Rick Stein’s Mexico to a more festive Nigel Slater’s Christmas Chronicles. We’ve picked the menu which we’ll be sharing very soon and all we can say is, it’s going to be a good one!

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Afternoon Tea – spaces available

Now fully booked

We have 2 spaces available for our Ottolenghi Sweet inspired afternoon tea this weekend, 18th November.

We’ll be serving up a delectable selection of savoury treats and then, because we couldn’t decide, we’re baking up a seven sweet bakes, all washed down with a welcome drink and a selection of teas and coffee. The full menu is available here.

If you’re interested in joining us, it’s £25pp, so get in touch using the contact us form!

November Menu: A Sweet Afternoon Tea

At the weekend we’ll be hosting what seems to be the first afternoon tea we’ve hosted in a long time!

This event will be inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh’s beautiful book Sweet and we’re very much going all out sweet for this one, serving up a delectable selection of seven sweet delights (plus some very tasty savouries to boot).

This is one event we’ve really been looking forward to and we struggled to keep the sweet bakes to just seven items! So, here’s the menu. We’d love to know what you think.

November 2017

 

Shall we fika?!

We dispelled all January blues a couple of weekends ago  when we brought the wonders of Scandinavian fika and hygge to the Manor! Fika is a Swedish term for a kind of coffee break, a conscious pause in the day to stop, reflect and enjoy a liquid refreshment and baked good! Hygge is that intriguing Scandinavian term for all things cosy, except we don’t have an English word for it so it’s nigh on impossible to explain! We created a lovely afternoon tea using the new Fika and Hygge cookbook from the guys at London’s Scandi Kitchen and some of our other favourites including Scandilicious.

Our adventurous diners were welcomed with a revitalising shot of aquavit – the Scandi water of life that comes flavoured with fennel and caraway. We served it Swedish style, over lots of ice and bitingly cold.

Our Nordic savouries included homemade rye crisp breads with caraway. These were topped with a soft gravadlax mousse and home pickled samphire – a creamy, salty and sour mini bite. Our rye bread open sandwiches came topped with a luscious dill mayonnaise, soft boiled egg and tomato.

Also on offer was a creamy, decadent mushroom tart. Mushroom, tarragon and shed loads of creme fraiche, baked and encased in a crisp shortcrust pastry shell. Finally was our take on Swedish meatballs! Little pork and fennel balls, with a dill and cucumber pickle and cranberry, wrapped in a soft home made brioche roll.

For our sweets we tried to use some seasonal produce and also serve some slightly unusual bakes. For seasonality our first nod to fika was a cute little rhubarb and custard bun spiked with cardamom and drenched in rhubarb syrup. A last minute addition to the tiers was a lightly spiced gingerbread cake filled with a raspberry cream. We had initially intended for this to be a Danish honey cake square but having tried the recipe twice over we could not get it to work and so had to bake a last minute alternative! To make up for the lack of honey cake we also offered an extra treat in the form of a mini fig tart. These were soft and chewy almond cakes filled with a lovely fig jam.

If that wasn’t enough other fika treats included mini cardamom buns filled with almond custardThese buns are traditionally served at Easter – almost a baked Scandi version of a doughnut! To finish off was the traditional Swedish chocolate sticky cake, Kladdkaka. A rich, dense chocolate cake with a gooey centre. This was served with fresh raspberries and clotted cream to make it even more decadent!

So, we’re glad to have started 2017, but it was a bit of a stressful event to break us into the new year! I’m not sure I’d recommend the Scandi Kitchen book – as beautiful as it is the recipes are complicated, confusing and not always very reliable! Having said that it’s Ottolenghi coming up next in February – now you can’t get more reliable than that! See you then…

January ’17 Menu – Scandi Afternoon Tea

Happy New Year to you all! We’re feeling rested (albeit still hungover) after the festive break and in a week’s time we’ll be kicking off our 2017 events.

Our first event of the year is an afternoon tea, using Scandinavian influences as our inspiration. We’ll be inviting out guests to partake in some Fika within the Hygge surroundings of the manor.

Think open sandwiches and rich bakes, this is a great way to start off the new year!

january-2017

A Taste of India

Back at the beginning of the month we hosted our first Afternoon Tea in a very long while and we were very much looking forward to rolling our sleeves up and baking. As usual we had a Manor theme to the afternoon’s proceedings, and this time we used Chetna Makan’s Cardamon Trail as inspiration, giving everything an Indian twist.

Our guests arrived to our usual welcome cocktail, this time a spicy, sour, ginger punch – whilst they settled down, got to know each other and awaited their savouries.

The savouries were a delightful mix of fragrant, spiced and hot dishes. There were chilli chicken flatbreads – homemade mini chappatis topped with marinated chicken, spinach, pink picked onions and cooling mint yoghurt. alongside these were aubergine and onion tarts – puff pastry tarts of tomato, caramelised onion, roasted aubergine and fiery coriander chutney. 

This fiery chutney also accompanied Dan’s magnificent paneer pie, which was a ton of paneer bound in a yummy masala sauce and wrapped in crispy puff pastry. The final savouries were little potato cups filled with a mung daal. This was a tiny morsel that packed a punch!

After a bit of respite we moved onto an array of delicious sweets, starting off with our classic buttermilk scones accompanied with cardamom clotted cream and homemade jumbleberry jam.

Next up were some zesty black sesame and lime cakes, little sponges packed with lime and black sesame and then topped with a lime icing for an extra hit! In contrast to this there were also some little choux buns filled with mango and praline and topped with a chocolate glaze –  a different yet delicious combination.

That wasn’t the end of the sweets – there were three more delectable delights!

Dan made small versions of Chetna’s almond, rose and honey cakes. These are a bit like a friand but Dan spiced his with fennel, cinnamon and cardamom. Chetna fills hers with cream but Dan doused his in a light buttercream, for extra naughtiness. Also on offer was a saffron sponge full of crunchy almonds and fresh cream. Saffron can be a challenging flavour for some people but it really worked in this very sweet and luxurious cake slice. Finally little mango lassi possets were a great palate cleanser as well as a pretty addition to the table.

This was a brilliant, fun afternoon with a lovely mix of old and new faces round the table. What with all of the lunches and evening events we’ve had recently it was great to get baking again.

Next month comes our 5th birthday event! Gosh, where does time go? We’re looking forward to celebrating with great guests, Korean food and Mikkeller beer!

 

September 2016 Menu – Indian Afternoon Tea

In just under a week we’ll once again be welcoming a lovely bunch of guests to the Manor. This month’s event is an Indian afternoon tea and we will be using the wonderful book The Cardamom Trail by Chetna Makan (GBBO contestant, apt given we’re in the middle of this year’s show).

We’ll be serving up an array of baked delights, all with a spiced twist. Do let us know what you think.

Sept_2016