Welcome to our blog, where we will be discussing everything tea related.
Be sure to stay-tuned for more blog postings!
We hope you enjoy your stay!
A New Year Has Begun
It has been a while since my last blog, and what a year it has been!
With the COVID-19 Pandemic putting a halt on many things, including our Full Afternoon Tea Service, we have had to adapt accordingly.
Thankfully, we were able to create ‘Afternoon Tea In A Box’, a box filled with delicious goodies, delivered straight to your front door. This initiative has allowed many customers to enjoy our homemade delicacies in the comfort of their own home. We will continue this service in 2021, offering many wonderful items throughout the year. For more information on ‘Afternoon Tea In A Box’, click here.
Let’s now take a look at 2020 in review:
In February, we were invited to join Vision TV’s taping of “The Royals – Where Does The Dynasty Stand.” It was an absolute pleasure to be a part of the conversation, as well as showcase an authentic British Afternoon Tea to all of those watching.
In July, we became a vendor at the Burlington Farmers Market, where we sold baked goods such as scones, and other delectable items. The Market is operated by the Burlington Lions Club, who donate all proceeds from the market operations to specific local projects, and those in need. For more information on the Burlington Lions Club, click here.
We are hoping to be there again this year; stay tuned for more information as the year progresses!
Throughout December, we replaced our Traditional Afternoon Tea with our Festive Delight, a menu dedicated to celebrating the holiday season with authentic British treats.
Included were Mince Meat Tarts, Buttery Shortbread, Christmas Fudge, and Twinings Festive Tea. All items were thoroughly enjoyed, with plans to continue the tradition this coming season!
During 2021, we will NOT be offering our Full Afternoon Tea Service, however, we will continue to deliver afternoon tea boxes. If you are looking for a unique way to celebrate a special occasion, such as a baby or wedding shower, birthday, or a much needed catch-up with close friends and family, let us come to you!
You may also be on the hunt for something extra special to do this year in the comfort and safety of your home, such as celebrating Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, or Easter. Let’s gather those special people in our lives, and have some fun! Let us bring Afternoon Tea directly to you!
In closing, I’d like to begin by saying a huge THANK YOU for every like, comment, and kind word that has been shared on Facebook, Instagram and beyond during 2020. Let’s make 2021 just as great, if not better!
As promised, below is a traditional British dessert recipe, Jam Roly-Poly, sure to warm the hearts of many.
Jam Roly-Poly is a great British dessert; a staple of many a school dinner back in the day. It will look like a car crash, but tastes great!
This recipe will make enough for 8 servings, with a preparation time of 10 minutes, a cooking time of 35 minutes, and a resting time of 30 minutes. In total, this dessert will take 1 hour and 15 minutes to prepare.
To begin, you will need the following ingredients:
- 1 cup self-raising flour (200 grams)
- 1/2 cup suet (100 grams)
- 1/2 cup milk (150 ml)
- 1 1/4 cups raspberry or strawberry jam (300 grams)
- 1 tablespoon powdered (caster) sugar
The method in preparing this dessert is as follows:
Prepare The Dough
- In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients together, then mix in the milk. Tip the dough out onto a floured worktop, then wrap it in plastic film, and put it in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes. Roll out the dough to a longish rectangle, then spread the jam on it, leaving a 2 cm (1 inch) margin all-round.
Assemble The Jam Roly-Poly
- Preheat your oven to 180°C (356°F) if it’s a fan oven, or 200°C (392°F), if not. Butter one side of a cookie sheet with greaseproof paper. Roll up the dough, then moisten the open edge with water, and gently press down with your finger to seal.
- Roll the roly-poly into the centre of the greaseproof paper, making sure the seam is on the underside. Raise the paper over the dough, and fold it over to form a seal, but leave plenty of room for the dough to expand.
- Twist the ends like a Christmas cracker, then tie them off with string. Then, wrap the whole thing in foil, again leaving plenty of room for expansion.
Bake The Jam Roly-Poly
- Place a wire rack over a roasting tin, then half fill the tin with boiling water, place the pudding parcel on top; bake for 35 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, and allow to cool for about 5 minutes. Unwrap the pudding, cut into slices about 2 cm (1 inch) thick, then serve with custard.
We hope you enjoyed our year in review! We look forward to servicing you soon!
Stay safe, and enjoy the rest of January! Until next time, pinkies up!
Tea Continues To Brew
The COVID-19 Pandemic has gripped us all in a variety of ways; from changing our lifestyle habits, to adapting a certain environment, the impact has been tremendous within our daily lives.
However uncertain the future may seem, there are some events that will never change. Flowers will continue to erupt with vibrant colours, trees will reawaken after a long winter, and Mother’s Day will be celebrated.
Let’s delve further into how we can continue to ‘keep the tea brewing’, while promising to social distance in the meantime.
Honoring the mother figures in our lives should always be a priority, no matter what our life circumstances may be. As a result of this year’s social distancing rule, The High Tea Trolley decided to embark upon a new tradition; delivering British Afternoon High Tea to all of our customers, right to their front doors!
Included in each order was an assortment of lovely tea sandwiches, such as egg mayonnaise, smoked salmon, and cucumber with cream cheese. We also spoiled all of our customers with a delectable scone, complete with homemade clotted cream and strawberry preserves.
For dessert, customers received a Lemon Elderflower Cupcake, elegantly decorated with sweetened white frosting, as well as a Bakewell Tart (named after Dame Judi Dench), and Chocolate Éclair.
Customers were thrilled; many experienced a ‘virtual’ tea experience with their loved ones, while others planned surprise deliveries, complete with decorative fascinators, which were also provided by The High Tea Trolley.
As a result of our event outreach, reservations reached capacity at a quick pace.
Therefore, overflow orders were given to Edwina Doddington of the Escarpment Tea Room, located in Milton, ON. As a sign of our appreciation, we would like to thank Edwina for her utmost effort in putting forth an excellent service, which was enjoyed by all whom ordered.
As a result of the success of our first delivery event, The High Tea Trolley has decided to pursue deliveries as an alternate path during the COVID-19 Pandemic, taking place each Saturday from 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm. For more information, and to place an order, please contact us directly via email or phone.
Let’s now discuss another event which has thrilled afternoon tea lovers for decades; Victoria Day.
Queen Victoria was a dedicated British sovereign, bringing forth a wealth of change within the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth during her reign of 63 years, from 1837 until 1901.
In 1845, Victoria Day was unofficially regarded as a holiday in Canada. It was to be held on May 24th, which was Queen Victoria’s actual birthday. After Queen Victoria’s passing in 1901, the Government of Canada established Victoria Day as an official holiday, to be celebrated on the third Monday in May.
To celebrate Queen Victoria, the dessert titled Victoria Sandwich Cake, was named in her honour. It was known that Queen Victoria herself enjoyed a slice or two of this delicious cake during her dedicated teatime in the 19th century.
The High Tea Trolley specializes in making Victoria Sandwich Cake, with many customers requested it either in a large size, as cupcakes, or as mini sponge cakes. All in all, it is a popular dessert which continues to impress at gatherings throughout the year.
To celebrate Victoria Day, The High Tea Trolley would love to share their famed recipe for Victoria Sandwich Cake, one which will be sure to keep the guests coming back for more.
To begin, you will need the following ingredients:
- 1 cup salted butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 4 eggs, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons milk
- ¾ cup – 1 cup (6-8 ounces) strawberry preserves OR lemon curd
- 1 cup (8 fluid ounces) heavy cream, whipped
- powdered sugar, for dusting
The method in preparing this cake is as follows:
- Preheat oven to 350°F; grease two 8-inch cake pans by lining the bottoms with parchment paper. Another option is to use one regular 8-inch cake pan, then slice the cake into two halves.
- Beat the butter and sugar together for several minutes, until fluffy and white. This is best achieved by using a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or a hand mixer. Scrape the sides occasionally while mixing.
- Whisk together the flour and baking powder in a small bowl. Add the eggs and flour to the butter mixture by alternating thirds on low speed. Add the milk to loosen the mixture; scrape as needed. When fully combined, divide between the two baking pans, or the one regular pan.
- Bake for 25 minutes, or until lightly-brown, with the surface springing back when pressed gently with one’s fingertip. Let cool completely before decorating (about 1.5 hours).
- On the bottom layer of the cake, spoon the strawberry preserves (or lemon curd) on the top, smoothing with a spoon until flat.
- Top with a generous layer of whip cream, then place the second layer of cake on top of the whip cream.
- Dust with one’s desired amount of powdered sugar, then serve with a hot tea.
To properly store the Victoria Sandwich Cake in the freezer, cake layers (must be cooled) can be wrapped in plastic wrap, then aluminum foil. They can be kept in the freezer for 1-2 months in order to maintain freshness. Be sure to thaw at room temperature, then decorate as described above.
We hope that you enjoyed our feature on Mother’s Day and Victoria Day! Stay-tuned for our next blog posting, which will explore the intricacies of loose-leaf tea.
Stay safe, and enjoy the rest of May! Until next time, pinkies up!
A New Year Brings A Fresh Cup Of Tea
Happy New Year to you all! The High Tea Trolley would like to welcome you to our first blog post of 2020. We hope that the new year has been good to you thus far. We are looking forward to an incredible year filled with delicious treats, memorable gatherings, and brewed tea!
Let’s begin the new year by describing how one can host an authentic afternoon tea party, along with updates from the High Tea Trolley.
Dress The Part
It can sound a tad posh, however, hosting an afternoon tea party is neither difficult, nor expensive. With the help of the High Tea Trolley, you can be sure your party will be fit for a queen (or princess)! To give your party that royal treatment, encourage guests to wear dresses, costume jewelry, and/or fascinators. Not only will this attire channel one’s inner aristocracy, it will also look elegant, fashionable, and delicate.
Name That Theme
When planning a tea party, many decide to follow a certain theme, giving the atmosphere a sense of excitement. Whether it be a bridal or baby shower, one may choose such themes as Downton Abbey, Upstairs Downstairs, Victorian Elegance, and so on. Pinterest is an excellent source for finding that perfect theme to fit your taste buds!
Send The Invites
Invitations can be exciting to prepare, especially when the party is your own. Be sure to send all invitations at least 2-4 weeks in advance of the event, specifying the date, time, and location. Providing a miniature map may also be beneficial for those unfamiliar with directions.
Asking guests to clarify if any dietary restrictions and/or allergies are present when sending in their RSVPs is a highly-desirable attribute. At the High Tea Trolley, we cater to all dietary needs, providing gluten and diary-free tea sandwiches, scones, and desserts at one’s request.
Decorating Your Table
Having a table elegantly decorated can boast the atmosphere of a tea party, bringing forth a feeling of joy and happiness when one sits down for that coveted cup of tea.
Many choose to decorate their tables with vintage china, silver flatware, glass bowls, coloured-serving pieces, and white linens. To add a touch of flare, one may also use table runners, themed-napkins, and flower bouquets.
At the High Tea Trolley, our table-setting experience boasts a beautiful atmosphere of elegance and pride, with all of the above-mentioned items available for any type of tea party one has in mind!
Authentic Food Menu
Having the perfect menu can please even the pickiest of guests, especially when items are fresh and tasteful. When planning a tea party, it is essential to have a wide array of delicate tea sandwiches, such as egg salad, cucumber with cream cheese, and/or smoked-salmon.
Another must are the freshly-baked scones, served with devonshire cream and strawberry preserves. At the High Tea Trolley, our scones have been raved upon time and again, with each bite boasting a wealth of flavour that many find incredible.
The most important, of course, are the desserts, which include a wide variety of flavours. Our favourites include the Chocolate Biscuit Cake (Queen Elizabeth II’s preferred-dessert), Dame Judy Dench’s Bakewell Tarts, Empire Biscuits, English Trifle, Victoria Sandwich Cake, and more!
With a new year comes new ideas, all of which surround our love of tea! At the present time, the High Tea Trolley are reviewing the idea of hosting afternoon tea parties tailored towards senior citizens. These parties will be held each weekday between the hours of 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm, with the aim focused on seniors whom have gathered within a church-setting.
At the High Tea Trolley, we are conscious of the fixed-income in which many senior citizens face on a daily basis. Therefore, the cost per individual will be substantially reduced to accommodate all guests accordingly. For more information on this initiative, please contact us directly.
Let’s start the new year right! Call us for all of your booking needs! Until then, pinkies up!
Christmas Is Upon Us
The Christmas season is upon us, and what better way to celebrate than with a traditional holiday recipe! Included in this post are updates from The High Tea Trolley, along with a ravishing recipe that will get you baking while the tea is steeping!
We hope you’re all enjoying the start of this holiday season! Even if you’re not a fan of the cold weather, it’s hard not to love a gorgeous snow-covered landscape!
This past year was quite busy for The High Tea Trolley, as we hosted a number of successful parties across the city. Our first public gathering took place at Sovereign House, a picturesque museum on the edge of Lake Ontario.
In addition, we hosted private gatherings at the Burloak Canoe Club and the Burlington Art Gallery. These events were centered around a host of savory treats, steeped tea, and vintage china, along with fizzy glasses of champagne, and towers of delicate sandwiches.
We also added a variety of items to our menu, one of them being the Chocolate Biscuit Cake, which, according to Queen Elizabeth II‘s former chef, Darren McGrady, this is a ‘must-have’ treat for HRH, even when traveling abroad. Each slice is eaten, without a morsel going to waste! It’s definitely one worth trying!
Other treats that were added to our menu included the Chocolate Truffles, Mini Lemon Meringue Tarts, and Blackberry & Lemon Tarts. All of these items were highly-requested, with many of them being eaten without a second-thought!
If you’ve ever ordered from us, you are familiar with our famous scones, which continue to be the ‘talk of the town’. With a spread of clotted cream and a dollop of strawberry jam, these scones are sure to satisfy your taste buds, no matter what time of day!
In 2020, experimentation in the kitchen will be taking a colourful turn. Due to popular demand, we have decided to incorporate macaroons, vintage-inspired sugar cookies, and other decorative treats to our menu. Stay-tuned for what our kitchen will turn-out next!
In the meantime, it’s time to share another timeless recipe for the holiday season; Cornflake Pie. Based with thin-pastry, a layer of jam, and crunchy golden cornflakes, it’s definitely one that is hard to resist!
To begin, you will need the following ingredients:
- 1 9-inch single deep-dish flaky pie crust, rolled-out, and fitted onto a pie plate, with the edge trimmed and crimped
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 2/3 cup dark corn syrup
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups coarsely crushed cornflakes
The method in preparing this pie is as follows:
- Preheat the oven to 350°C; prepare the pie crust, then set-aside.
Thoroughly mix the sugar and corn syrup together in a large bowl.
- Crack the eggs, one at a time, over a small bowl. Beat them well, then stir them into the sugar mixture.
- Add the vanilla, melted butter, and salt, then stir until blended. Fold in the crushed cornflakes until well-coated.
- Pour the filling into the pie crust, place in the oven, then bake until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean (for about 45 to 50 minutes). Let cool completely on a wire rack; enjoy with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
Enjoy the beautiful holiday season! We look forward to servicing you in 2020! Until then, pinkies up!
A Lifetime Love For Tea
Our first post will feature Jackie, the owner of The High Tea Trolley, as she shares her love for afternoon tea, along with a beloved recipe that will be sure to keep you coming back for more!
Welcome to The High Tea Trolley, I am glad that you have found us! We look forward to having you join us on this tea-riffic journey, as we discover the beauty and allure of afternoon tea.
You may be wondering how I had settled on the idea of owning a mobile high tea company. Well, being born and raised in Manchester, England, I developed a love for baking during high school. My favourite school subjects at the time were English, History, and Domestic Science.
To this day, these remain my favourites, and together, they have birthed a passion for British authentic baking, coupled with such traditions as the centuries old practice of Afternoon Tea.
In the 1980s, I began to share my love of high tea with those in Canada, my new found home. Bringing forth a wealth of knowledge about the elegant tradition, I became entranced with the beauty of the event, along with the fundamentals needed to successfully run a mobile high tea business.
Over the course of this year, I will dig through my decades old recipe book, sharing with you all those delightful recipes which make afternoon tea such a treat!
To begin, my first share will be none other than Manchester Pudding, known as the ‘Queen Of All Puddings’.
To begin, you will need the following ingredients:
- 2 1/2 cups (600 ml) milk
- 1/4 cup (50 grams) butter
- 1/4 cup (50 grams) white sugar
- 1/2 cup fresh white breadcrumbs (on how to make your own fresh breadcrumbs, click here).
- 6 egg yolks, beaten
- 3-4 tablespoons raspberry jam
- finely grated zest of one lemon
- For the meringue topping: 4 egg whites, 1 1/4 cups (225 grams) white sugar
The method in preparing this pudding is as follows:
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/355°F; bring the milk and lemon zest to a boil in a small pan; set-aside to infuse for 10 minutes.
- Add the butter and white sugar to the infused milk, then simmer for 3-4 minutes. Once simmered, add in the fresh white breadcrumbs, then beat in the egg yolks; mix-well together.
- Pour the mixture into a 1.7 L soufflé dish, then place in a roasting tray. Pour hot water into the tray around the soufflé dish, until the water reaches at least halfway up the sides of the dish.
- Bake for 30 minutes until set, then remove the dish from the oven; set-aside to cool slightly. Increase the oven temperature to 230°C/445°F.
- Prepare the meringue topping by lightly whisking the egg whites, then gradually beating in the white sugar until soft peaks form.
- Spread the raspberry jam evenly over the baked custard, then top with the beaten egg whites.
- Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes, or until the meringue has lightly-set. Serve the pudding warm from the oven; enjoy!
We look forward to sharing more with you in our next blog post! Until then, pinkies up!