Books, Tea, and the Trinity: Twice Baked Potatoes

Back in 2020, some friends and I started a Tea Party/Bible Study/Book Club. We met every Wednesday and worked our way through the Chronicles of Narnia and are currently working through the Lorien Legacies. When we started I resolved to share all the recipes, we have made-but I haven’t gone through them as quickly as I hoped. 

When we completed The Magician’s Nephew,The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; and A Horse and His Boy; we moved on to book four, Prince Caspian. This book is one of my favorites in the series as I love Prince Caspian (although the Disney film version is horrible). Like A Horse and His Boy, this book did not mention a lot of specific foods, so we planned whatever we wanted to make.

As I wasn’t in charge of this book, there will be no discussion questions, just recipes. 

The first week we had Apple Cinnamon Scones: Salmon Radish Cucumber Canapés, Cinnamon Bread-Honey-Cheese-Apple and Ham Sandwiches, Kellogg’s Cheese Potato Crisps, and Applesauce Cake; all paired with Caroline’s Coffee Roaster Princess Earl Grey (as we needed to have some royal-tea).

The next week we had lavender flowering tea, Irish Soda Bread, Tuna Salad, Twice Baked Potatoes, carrot soup, and Quaker Oatmeal Cookies with Chocolate Chips.

I originally wanted to make the Teatime Magazine twice baked mice potatoes in honor of Reepicheep entering the story; but when I went to the market they were all out of the small potatoes and I had to buy larger ones. I will attempt this recipe again, with small potatoes, and try to make them as nice

Ingredients:

  • 1 (24-ounce) bag small red potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1¾ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • ½ cup finely grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 6 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon whole milk
  • 24 (2½x⅛-inch) slices green onion, green parts only
  • 24 sliced almonds, lightly toasted
  • 2 black olives, finely chopped

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, toss potatoes with oil and 1 teaspoon salt. Place potatoes on prepared baking sheet.
  3. Bake until tender when pierced with a fork, approximately 18 minutes. Let cool on pan on a wire cooling rack.
  4. Reduce oven temperature to 375°.
  5. Using a sharp knife, cut 12 potatoes in half lengthwise. Peel and discard skins from remaining potatoes. Transfer peeled potatoes to a medium bowl.
  6. Using a ¼ teaspoon, scoop a small well from potato halves, adding pulp from wells to bowl with whole, peeled potatoes. Using a fork, slightly mash whole, peeled potatoes. Add cheese, sour cream, and remaining ¾ teaspoon salt. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Add milk, beating until incorporated (mixture will be thick). Transfer mixture to a piping bag fitted with an open-star tip (Wilton #4B).
  7. Pipe potato mixture back and forth into potato shells. Return filled potato shells to baking sheet.
  8. Bake until warmed through, 15 to 20 minutes. Let potatoes cool to room temperature.
  9. In a medium bowl full of cold water, place 2½-inch-long green onion slices to curl for tails. Blot dry on paper towels just before using.
  10. To create whiskers, using a sharp knife, gently cut a slit at each end of ¾-inch-long green onion slices.
  11. On each potato, gently press into place 2 almond slices for ears. Using tweezers, place 2 olive bits for eyes, green onion whiskers, and a green onion tail. Serve within an hour.

Notes: Potatoes can be prepared and filled up to 3 days ahead, let cool completely, place in an airtight container, and refrigerate. Up to 2 hours before serving, warm filled potatoes in a 375° oven. Let cool before decorating as mice.

So I did try to turn my large potatoes into large mice, but it just didn’t work out. Instead I had to admit defeat and just make regular twice baked potatoes.

These were delicious and like I said above, I plan on making them again. And even though they were not boiled, I do think Mr. Collins would have enjoyed them too.

For more from our Books, Tea, and the Trinity tea times, go to Applesauce Cake

For more potato recipes, go to Cheese Potato Crisps

For more Teatime Magazine recipes, go to Brisket and Slaw Roulades

For more recipes, go to Rice Krispies Chocolate Chip Cookies

For more tea posts, go to Spill the Tea: There & Back Again Cafe

Books, Tea, and the Trinity: Applesauce Cake

Back in 2020, some friends and I started a Tea Party/Bible Study/Book Club. We met every Wednesday and worked our way through the Chronicles of Narnia and are currently working through the Lorien Legacies. When we started I resolved to share all the recipes, we have made-but I haven’t gone through them as quickly as I hoped.

When we completed The Magician’s Nephew, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; and A Horse and His Boy; we moved on to book 4 Prince Caspian. This book is one of my favorites in the series as I love Prince Caspian (although the Disney film version is horrible). Like A Horse and His Boy, this book did not mention a lot of specific foods, so we planned whatever we wanted to make.

As I wasn’t in charge of this book, there will be no discussion questions, just recipes.

The first week we had Apple Cinnamon Scones: Salmon Radish Cucumber Canapés, Cinnamon Bread-Honey-Cheese-Apple and Ham Sandwiches, Kellogg’s Cheese Potato Crisps, and Applesauce Cake; all paired with Caroline’s Coffee Roaster Princess Earl Grey (as we needed to have some royal-tea).

This recipe comes from my myrecipes.com.

Ingredients:

Cake

  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup thick applesauce
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg

Glaze:

• 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

•2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Butter a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan, line bottom with parchment and butter paper.
  3. In one bowl beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
  4. Add the egg to the butter and sugar mixture.
  5. In a separate bowl, stir baking soda into the applesauce.
  6. In a third bowl mix the remaining ingredients
  7. Add the second and third mixture to the first butter mixture in 3 additions; alternating between the two.
  8. Pour the batter into the pan and bake until the top springs back when pressed, about 50 minutes.
  9. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then turn out onto rack.
  10. Make the glaze by mixing the lemon juice and confectioners’ sugar.
  11. Spoon the glaze over cake.

These are so delicious. You can’t go wrong with potatoes and cheese! This is also easy to make, and doesn’t take that long to bake. I definitely recommend!

For more from our Books, Tea, and the Trinity tea times, go to Cheese Potato Crisps

For more cake recipes, go to Lemon Gingerbread Cake

For more dessert, go to Marmalade Rolls

For more recipes, go to Rice Krispies Chocolate Chip Cookies

For more tea posts, go to Spill the Tea: There & Back Again Cafe

The Magician’s Nephew Tea Party/Book Club: Lemon Gingerbread Cake

So every Wednesday, starting in October, I have been a part of a Tea Party/Bible Study/Book Club on The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis. This is different from my book club and the Book Club Picks I have been reviewing (and desperately need to catch up on). I also need to catch up on these recipes. Week two was Chami Spice Ginger Plum Tea, Dark Chocolate Ginger Scones, Curried Egg Salad Triple Stacks Sandwiches, Turkey-Apple Tea Sandwiches, Fotina Flower Puffed Pastry, and Lemon Gingerbread Cake.

I couldn’t share the recipes in October as I was in the middle of Horrorfest IX, so I am catching up and of course the last thing we have to review is dessert.

This comes from Tea Time Magazine andI actually screwed this dessert up as I thought it was cookies, but realized after I had already started the batter-it is cakelets. Not only did I read that wrong, but it turns out that I did not read through all the directions and did not have all the right supplies. There wasn’t time to go get other ingredients or do another recipe so instead I converted it into a cake, with some substitutions.

From Clueless

Oh, well!

Ingredients Cake Batter:

  • 2.5 Cups of Flour
  • 1/3 Cup of Granulated (White) Sugar
  • 1.5 Teaspoons of Ground Ginger
  • 1 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
  • 1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Ground Cloves
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 1/2 Cup of Unsalted Butter, Softened
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1 Tbsp of Fresh Lemon Zest
  • 3/4 Cup of Hot Water
  • 1/2 Cup of Molasses (Or Substitute with Honey)
  • 1/2 Cup of Honey
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract

Lemon Glaze Ingredients:

  • 4 Cups of Confectioner’s Sugar (Powdered Sugar)
  • 1/2 Cup of Fresh Lemon Juice

Cake Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Spray loaf pan with nonstick cooking spay or grease pan.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour sugar, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt.
  4. Add butter, egg, lemon zest, hot water, molasses or the substitute, honey, and vanilla extract.
  5. Beat mixture at low speed for about 30 seconds.
  6. Increase speed and beat for 3 minutes.
  7. Fill pan.
  8. Bake until for 20-30 minutes, continue baking until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  9. Let cake cool before pouring lemon glaze.

Directions for Lemon Glaze:

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together sugar and lemon juice until smooth and creamy.
  2. Pour over cake.

 

So because this was cooked in a pan instead of the little molds it took much longer to bake. It also was taking a really long time to bake so I ended up cutting the cake a bit so that it would cook faster and throughout. The frosting covered it, so I didn’t end up having to worry too much about the presentation.

Even though I made a few mistakes and this was not as the recipe intended it to be, it was extremely delicious and we all loved it. I had to send the leftovers with home with my friend as I couldn’t have it with me, I’d eat it all up.

For more from The Magician’s Nephew Tea Party/Book Club, go to Fotina Flower Puffed Pastry

For more recipes, go to Turkey-Apple Tea Sandwiches

For more Tea Time Magazine Recipes, go to Curried Egg Salad Triple Stacks Sandwiches

For more Cake recipes, go to Meyer Lemon Poppyseed Cake

For more dessert, go to Mini Apple Pies

For more tea posts, go to Dark Chocolate Ginger Scones

Meyer Lemon Poppyseed Cake

So the last Monday of the month our book club meets to discuss the book we have been reading. I used to have Mondays off and we would go out after the other book club members got off, but my job changed and we now meet after I get off at 5. Typically we just have light snacks, but as this Monday I didn’t have to work due to the quarantine, I decided I would do a little tea party.

The book we had just finished reading wasThe Secret Adversary, and the two main characters go to tea a few times at Lyons Tea Cafe. The book is set in 1921, and I tried to find a menu of the time but couldn’t.

I did find one from 1913 which did included pommes pont neuf and a few other things. I had decided what to make when my coworker gave me a whole box of Meyer’s Lemons.

That’s not good.

We had been talking about the lemons as I shared I wanted to try making lemon curd, as I have more free time, but I thought she was just going to give me one or two, not a box full.

Uh oh

So instead of what sweets I planned to make, we were doing a lemon theme.

So we had egg salad sandwiches, ham and cheese sandwiches, french fries (pommes pont neuf), Scottish Oat scones, lemon curd, lemon crinkle cookies, and meyer lemon poppyseed cake. And we all had a wonderful time talking about our book, snacking, and drinking tea.

After all:

I had planned to share each recipe with you, starting with the scones, but then Marnie Cannon on instagram asked about the cake recipe, so instead we will be starting with that. But I will still share the others throughout the month. If any interest you, I encourage you to try them out.

This recipe comes from Browned Butter Blondie.

Cake Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup of Butter at Room Temperature
  • 1 Cup + 1 Tbsp of Sugar
  • 3 Large Eggs at Room Temperature
  • 1.5 Tbsps of Lemon Zest
  • 2 Tbsps of Lemon Juice
  • 1.5 Tsp of Vanilla
  • 1.5 Cups + 2 Tbsp of Flour
  • 1/2 Tsp of Salt
  • 1/4 Tsp of Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Tsp of Baking Powder
  • 1.5 Tbsp of Poppyseeds
  • 1/2 Cup of Plain Greek Yogurt at Room Temperature

Glaze Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup of Confectioner’s Sugar (Powdered Sugar)
  • 3-4 Tbsps of Whole Milk

Directions:

  1. Preheat the ovem to 350 degrees F.
  2. Spray a 9 x 4 inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
  4. Use an electric mixer to beat the sugar and butter together.
  5. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well after each egg.
  6. Add lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla. Mix until combined.
  7. With the mixer on low add some of the flour mixture, and mix.
  8. Then add the yogurt and mix. Repeat alternating between flour mixture and yogurt.
  9. Remove from mixer and mix in poppyseeds, but just until they are incorporated. Do not overmix.
  10. Pour batter into pan and cook for 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
  11. Remove from oven and cool for 10 mins.
  12. While cake is cooling, whisk confectioner’s sugar and milk together.
  13. While cake is warm, spoon the glaze over the top.
  14. Sprinkle with poppyseeds if desired.

This was extremely delicious! If you like lemon and lemon cake I suggest you try it out for yourself.

For more recipes, go to Irish Soda Bread

For more desserts, go to Crispy, Chewy, Matcha Green Tea Cookies

For more tea parties, go to Literary Tea Parties

Book Club Picks: A Common Life, The Wedding Story

So I have fallen behind with my posts, but as you know I started a book club last year:

Every month we read a book and I do a little post on the book we read and discussed. What can I say, I just love books.

 

There is no theme, other than with each month, a different member gets to pick a book, whichever one they want. One has chosen to read a few books from The Mitford Years series. So far we had read the first and second books in series. They decided to skip the other books to go to book six, which was written later but is supposed to go between book two, A Light in the Window and three, These High Green Hills.

A Common Life: The Wedding Story (The Mitford Years #6) by Jan Karon

This book is set in the fictional town of Mitford, North Carolina. The last book centered around the Vicar, Father Tim as he is contemplating at age 60 if he should continue or retire. In that year he faces all kinds of changes from a dog adopting him, taking in a child, jewel thieves, a fake antiquities ring, health changes, a new neighbor/love interest, all kinds of secrets being revealed, and more. This town and Father Tim will never be the same.

The second book, Father Tim and Cynthia have become boyfriend and girlfriend. But when their relationship becomes a long distance one, he begins to pull away from her because of his fear of getting hurt. Also, a local widow is trying to catch him, using every ploy and plot to ensnare him. And to top it all off, a relative from Ireland has followed him home and is staying with him, but something about her is not right as she spends all her time in her room.

When Karon was writing the series, she continued the next book, book three they were already married and continued to write about their lives. However, people love a good wedding.

And they wanted to know what Father Tim’s was like. Will Father Tim fall apart when he takes his vows? Will Cynthia make it to the church on time? Who’ll arrange the flowers and bake the wedding cake? And will Uncle Billy’s prayers for a great joke be answered in time for the reception?

This book was so adorable and a total fan service. We got everything we wanted.

Yay!

I loved seeing Father Tim have to go through all the marriage things-planning, counseling, etc. And the little things about money, the wedding night, etc. Here is a 60 year old man who never was married and is going through all this for the first time. But hey, he was careful in finding just the right person.

I loved the part when one of the ladies in the community is hoping to bake the cake for the wedding, but hasn’t heard from the couple asking her to do it. She works herself up into a lather, becoming so angry-but then is asked and is completely speechless-a hilarious scene.

It is such a fun adorable book, that of you loved any of these books in the series you need to check it out.

For more book club picks, go to Book Club Picks: The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II

For more books by Jan Karon, go to Book Club Picks: A Light in the Window

For more in The Mitford Years, go to Book Club Picks: At Home in Mitford

For more weddings, go to Those Aren’t Men They Are the Living Dead: White Zombie (1932)

For more Jane Austen Quotes, go to Most Romantic Moment In Real Life

So I was writing this review I decided it was the perfect time to share my own bit of news. I just got engaged.

I know, right. Its amazing that I AM going to be married. After all, I thought like Marianne Dashwood:

But what can I say, sometimes life takes turns we don’t expect, we meet people who change our way of seeing the world, we fall in love.

We meet in May of last year and started dating five months later. I know he is the right guy for me.

And I’m right for him.

Aw!

We are to be married in two months! Its not a lot of time, but I’ll get it done. The most important thing is we will be together.

I could go on, but:

So I will end on this:

 

,