Sunday, November 18, 2018

Tea Etquette!

1. Does one drink tea or take tea?

One drinks tea. During the Victorian era, the term to take tea was used by the lower classes and considered a vulgar expression by the upper classes.

2. Why is the shape of a teapot different from a coffee or chocolate pot?
The teapot is designed with a lower rounded body to insure the tea leaves have the proper room for expansion during the infusion process. The lower placement of the spout on the vessel allows for the tea to be poured without interfering with the leaves.
3. What is the correct placement of the teapot on the table?
The spout of the teapot and the tea kettle faces the hostess or pourer.
4.Are tea urns used for brewing or infusing tea?
No. Tea urns were designed to heat and hold hot water for larger quantities of water. Their function was the same as a tea kettle.Ideally, one would dispense the hot water from the urn into the teapot. "Bring the pot to the Kettle, not the kettle to the pot."
5.How does a teacup differ from a coffee or chocolate cup?
Traditionally a cup equals four ounces. However, the time of day and the beverage served will dictate the proper size of the service piece. Except for demitasse cups, which are served half full, all other cups are served three quarters full. A teacup is 3 1/4" to 3 3/4" in diameter and 2" to 2 1/2" in height. the companion saucer ranges from 5 1/4" to 5 5/8" across. A teacup is shallow and wider than a coffee or chocolate cup, giving the beverage a chance to temper before drinking.
6. What is a mustache cup?
A mustache cup is a nineteenth century variation of the teacup created in England by Harvey Adams. It is designed with a slit ledge projecting from the front side of the rim, allowing the tea to flow through while a gentleman's mustache remains dry resting on the top lip.
7.Why in older pictures of tea settings are spoons placed across the top of a teacup?
Tea was very expensive during the early years of its popularity. As such,the actual tea wares were small in size. There was no room for a teaspoon to rest on the saucer. A guest rested their teaspoon on top of their teacup as an indication they had had sufficient tea. This was a signal to the hostess to stop pouring tea. Today, to indicate the same signal, due to the larger size of the teacup and saucer, the proper placement of the spoon would be across the top of your saucer, not the cup.
8. What is a tea plate?
Native to England and Europe, tea plates were customized to hold a teacup without a saucer.The plate was embedded with a shallow well to secure the teacup. The foods and tea were served together on one plate. When one is using separate tea service pieces the customary size today is either a salad/dessert plate of seven to eight inches or a bread and butter plate of six to seven inches.
9. Where does the expression "not my cup of tea" come from?
To refer to one as "not my cup of tea" derives from the fifteenth century Japanese Teaism. "No tea to him." As one "insusceptible to the seriocomic interests of the personal drama." It is used to describe those one does not care for.
10. How is a traditional English trifle made?
Ruth Darley's advice, whether made from scratch or not, for an easy and quick English trifle recipe. Preferably set in a large footed bowl, alternate layers of the following ingredients: sponge or pound cake moistened with Sherry, egg custard or pudding, sliced strawberries, whipped cream and slivered almonds, repeat layers until bowl is filled. Fruit juice may be substituted for Sherry. Custard and pudding flavors may be changed to taste as well as seasonal berries.
11. When drinking tea does one lift the teacup and saucer or just the teacup?
If one is seated at a table, the proper manner to drink tea is to raise the teacup only,placing it back into the saucer in between sips.
If you are at a buffet tea, hold the tea saucer in your lap with your left hand and hold the tea cup in your right hand. When not in use, place the tea cup back in the tea saucer and hold in your lap.
In either event, never wave or hold your tea cup in the air.
12.What are the proper protocols for wearing gloves at an afternoon tea?
The protocols for wearing gloves are the same, whether one is attending an afternoon tea or any other event where foods and beverages are served.
While gloves are often highly designed with decorations and adornments, their sole purpose is to cover and protect ones hands from the elements.
When greeting another, remove the glove from the right hand, place the removed glove in your left hand and shake hands skin to skin.
It is improper to dine with ones gloves on. Remove your gloves before sitting down to dine. The exception is for long, formal gloves with buttons at the wrist. It is acceptable to unbutton, remove ones fingers and hands and fold back, to the wrist ,the lower portion of the glove without removing the upper portion from your arm. If the gloves have no wrist buttons, the gloves should be removed in their entirety before dining.

Brewing the perfect cup of tea!

We have all seen people brewing tea at some point in our lives. You may even have tasted one that is so delicious you felt that you could drink several more cups. Having experienced this you may have wondered why your own tea doesn't quite stack up. So what is the secret to brewing tea that tastes like pure heaven?
Firstly you need to understand that the manner of brewing tea for each type of tea is different and specific and geared to yield a fragrant and delicious cup of tea for that type. You must follow the specific process for your chosen variety of tea. Then experiment a little finding the right process for brewing tea which works for you. Remember that when you are brewing tea, your sense of taste will inform you when you have a good tasting cup of tea or not.
The other fact which you need to know when you are brewing tea is that different tea varieties have varying steeping times.. You should try to adhere to these steeping times when you brew tea otherwise you may end up with a brew which is bitter to the taste. So let's see what the steeping times for some of the different types of teas are:
  • » Green tea needs to steep for about 2 to 3 minutes
  • » Black tea needs to steep for about 3 to5 minutes
  • » White tea needs to steep for about 1 to 3 minutes
  • » Herbal (tisanes) need to steep for about 5 to 8 minutes
  • » Oolong tea needs to steep for about 3 to 5 minutes
You will also need to have time to make the tea as otherwise you will lack the time needed for brewing tea in a manner which will provide flavorful tea. The first step in learning the art of brewing tea is to fill your kettle - either an electrical or whistling one (the later is preferred with fresh natural spring water. You will need to bring the water to a boil, but keep in mind that you can't allow the water to over boil as this will spoil the tea.

A good test of how much impact water has during the process of brewing tea. Make two cups of tea, one with good quality water and the other with plain tap water and carry out your own taste test.
At this point we will discuss individually the methods of brewing tea for each of the different main types of tea
After going through the individual articles on brewing tea above you will understand that while there are some differences in the art of brewing tea for each type, the main facts for brewing tea remain the same - basically to brew tea you need:
  • » A tea pot or two
  • » Fresh spring water or other good quality water
  • » A high quality tea of your choice
  • » Time to allow the tea to steep
  • » A strainer, tea basket or tea ball to remove the tea leaves out of the infusion
  • » And a warmed tea cup or mug
With all of these items at the ready to brew tea and some care you are now ready to brew yourself the perfect cup of tea. Like drinking tea, brewing tea also has the ability to sooth away the cares and troubles of the day. The perfectly brewed cup of tea is the perfect end to a hectic day.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Reviews of StudioE/ Tea C0ttage

Reviews of StudioE/ Tea C0ttage
Zedidiah Augustus Scrimm reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star   March 22

Shannon Ansaldi reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star March 15....Lady Estelle is amazing. Our girl scout troop really enjoyed learning about etiquette and manners. Estelle kept the girls entertained and they loved learning about high tea. It was so much fun getting dressed up and seeing what women used to wear. I cannot recommend her enough. Great for girl scouts/girls birthday parties!!

Vikki Bristlin-Lax reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star  June 27, 2017This is one of my favorite places to chillax. Relax in a lovely Victorian Tea Salon while getting caught up on your reading and enjoying the finest teas.

Eliza Docca reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star  January 23, 2017One of my very favorite places! Lady Estelle is the best!

Sarah Marshall reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star  January 2, 2017...A nice relaxing place to read and chat while feeling like your back in time.

StudioE/ Tea Cottage Thank you for your kind review!

Irving Concepcion reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star  October 31, 2016I enjoyed the atmosphere, and learning about Teas, and proper etiquette, such a nice warm atmosphere, thank you

Barbara Borrelli reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star  October 27, 2016Nice place to just drop in and relax after a stressful day with a good book and a hot piping cup of tea and her scones, well you just have to find out for yourself

Alanna McLaughlin reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star October 27, 2016Excellent Victorian tea. Very nice and relaxed with a fancy British flair. Lovely.

Roxanne Booker Power reviewed StudioE/ Tea Cottage5 star  October 18, 2016

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Pumpkin Spice Bread for the Fall Table.

 This is a wonderful bread to grace the Fall Harvest Table

Recipe By:Kris Gunn
"This spicy pumpkin bread comes out VERY moist even without oil. It tastes just like pumpkin pie!"


  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 (16 ounce) can solid pack pumpkin
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 cup water


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease two 9-inch loaf pans.
  2. Mix white sugar, brown sugar, and eggs in a large bowl; stir in pumpkin and mix well. Combine flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, cloves, and allspice in a bowl; add alternately with water to pumpkin mixture. Pour into prepared loaf pans.
  3. Bake in preheated oven until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 60 to 65 minutes. Cool in pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack.

Baked Apple Roses

Baked Apple Roses

This was my second time making these and they get prettier and easier every time.
Recipe By:Chef John
"These were inspired by a cook named Ana, a Brazilian food blogger living in Italy. I really hope you give these gorgeous looking, and very delicious apple roses a try soon. Enjoy!"

1 large red apple, cored and very thinly sliced
1/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed

1/4 cup melted butter
1 egg
2 teaspoons water
1 teaspoon confectioners' sugar (optional)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Butter 2 small ramekins (6 to 8 ounce) and dust with white sugar.
Place apple slices on a plate, overlapping slightly if necessary. Microwave on High about 45 seconds just until slices have softened a bit. Cover plate with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel.
Mix together sugar and cinnamon in a bowl.
Roll puff pastry sheet to less than 1/8-inch thickness. Using a pizza cutter, cut two 3-inch by 12-inch rectangles. Reserve remaining pieces for another use.
Spread melted butter over dough; top with a generous amount of cinnamon-sugar. Place apple slices along 1 long edge of dough, about 1/4 inch beyond edge of dough, overlapping slices slightly. Fold bottom half of dough over the apple slices to form a long "folder" of dough with rounded edges of apple slices exposed.
Beat egg and water together in a bowl. Paint surface of dough with egg wash. Sprinkle with more cinnamon-sugar, to taste.
Starting from one end, roll dough not too tightly to form a rose-shaped pastry. Seal roll with end of dough strip.
Transfer roses to prepared ramekins. Sprinkle with a little more cinnamon-sugar. Place ramekins directly on middle rack of preheated oven.
Bake until well browned, about 45 minutes. Remove ramekins with tongs and place on baking sheet to cool 5 to 10 minutes. Remove apple roses from ramekins and finish cooling on rack. Dust with confectioners' sugar before serving.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Black Widow Spider Tea with friends.

 What a fun way to end October than to have a Black Widow Spider Tea with friends. It was delightful. We sat around in Halloween attire, sipped tea and told ghost stories, while we waited for the TRICK-O-TREATER'S. Very strangely non of the little children showed up. I wounder why said the spider to the fly.

September Tea Travel

   I am happy to say my tea time travels are on it's way. I have decided to visit as many tea shops and salons as I can. Will be looking...