How to Clean Your Tea Infusers

If you are a tea addict, or teaddict, like me, you drink a lot of tea.

And when you drink as much tea as I do, your tea infuser gets all gross and brown and embarrassing for people to see.

But I have found a way to clean them. On the box that my forlife teapot came in said to use baking soda and warm water.

Huh

Not super clear, so I went online and cruised a few pages for a little more info:

  1. Put some baking soda on the areas affected. Then add a little warm water so it is pastelike.
  2. Scrub the areas with the paste, adding more baking soda if needed.

Voila! It looks amazing.

I’ve had this infuser like 4 years now and it looks brand spanking new. Amazing!

This one I’ve had even longer, and it was horribly brown and look at it now!

I just wish I had taken a before picture for you all so you could see it. I’m kicking myself as this is amazing, baking soda is amazing!

Wow!

And it will help all you tea lovers keep their tea things nice and clean.

For more tea posts, go to Cucumber Aioli Canapés

For more tea love, go to Mug o’ Tea Treats Christmas Gift

The Magician’s Nephew Tea Party/Book Club: Fotina Flower Puffed Pastry

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 after sandwiches we have our sides.

And food to go with.

This comes from Tea Time Magazine. I did change the recipe a bit as I took out the olive salad, I forgot to buy it. Oops!

Ingredients:

  • 1 Sheet of Frozen Puff Pastry, Slightly Thawed
  • 6 (1-inch) Cubes Fotina Cheese
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1 Tablespoon of Water

Directions:

  1. Preheat the Oven at 400 Degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Using 2 1/4 inch flower-shaped cutter, cut 12 flowers from puff pastry sheet.
  4. Using a 1-inch round cutter, cut out and discard centers from 6 flowers.
  5. Stack a cutout flower on top of a whole flower and place on a prepared baking sheet.
  6. Repeat for remaining flowers. Press edges together using a fork.
  7. Place a cheese cube in the center of each flower.
  8. In a small bowl, combine egg and water, whisking well to make an egg wash.
  9. Using a pastry brush, brush tops of flowers with egg wash.
  10. Bake until flowers are puffed and golden brown, 10-12 mins.
  11. Serve Warm

These weren’t bad but very cheesy. I think they would have been better if I had put in something with the cheese, the olive spread or basil or something.

But otherwise tea was wonderful.

For more from The Magician’s Nephew Tea Party/Book Club, go to Turkey-Apple Tea Sandwiches

For more recipes, go to Curried Egg Salad Triple Stacks Sandwiches

For more Tea Time Magazine Recipes, go to Tea Time Magazine’s Ham and Cheese Tea Sandwiches

For more sides, go to Tea Time Magazine’s Fotina & Pork Puffed Pastry

For more tea posts, go to Dark Chocolate Ginger Scones

The Magician’s Nephew Tea Party/Book Club: Dark Chocolate Ginger Scones

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). The first week we had Cederberg Tea Company Rooibos + Ginger Tea, Cranberry-Spice Scones with Maple Cream, Tea Time Magazine’s Ham and Cheese Tea Sandwiches, Cucumber-Four Peppercorn Goat Cheese Canapés, Fotina & Pork Puffed Pastry, and Mini Apple Pies.

Now we are moving onto week two. We had Chami Spice Ginger Plum Tea, Dark Chocolate Ginger Scones, Curried Egg Salad Triple Stacks Sandwiches, Turkey Apple Sandwiches, Fotina Flower Pastry, and Lemon Gingerbread Cake.

I couldn’t share the recipes in October as I was in the middle of Horrorfst IX, so I am catching up and of course starting off our second dinner with scones.

This comes from With Spice

Tea first!

Ingredients:

  • 3 Cups and 1 Tbsp of Flour
  • 1/3 Cup of Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp of Baking Powder
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 1 Tsp Ground Ginger
  • 1 Stick (1/2 Cup) Cold Unsalted Butter Cubed
  • 3/4 Cup of Crystallized Ginger, diced
  • 1/2 Cup of Bittersweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1.5 Cups of Heavy Cream, Cold
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 1 Tbsp of Water

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and ground ginger until well combined.
  2. Add the butter and quickly rub it into the flour until it is small pea-sized pieces, or cut the butter using two knives or a pastry blender.
  3. Stir in ginger and chocolate chips.
  4. Make a small well in the middle of the dry ingredients and pour the heavy cream.
  5. Using a fork, gently mix the cream and dry ingredients until it becomes a shaggy dough.
  6. In the bowl, knead the dough 6-8 times with your hands.
  7. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface, cut in half and gently shape into round balls.
  8. Roll the balls of dough into 7 inch round disks, sprinkling the dough with flour as needed to prevent it from sticking.
  9. If the dough wars up too much, put it in the freezer for a few minutes to keep the butter cold.
  10. Cut each circle into 6 wedges and place the scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet with about 2″ between them.
  11. Place the baking sheet in the freezer for 15 mins, and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  12. Beat together the egg, yolk, and water in a small bowl and using a pastry brush, lightly coat the tops of the scones.
  13. Bake the scones 15-18 minutes or until the tops and bottom are golden brown.

These were delicious, and if you like ginger you’ll love these.

And food to go with.

For more from The Magician’s Nephew Tea Party/Book Club, go to Mini Apple Pies

For more recipes, go to Tea Time Magazine’s Fotina & Pork Puffed Pastry

For more scones, go to Cranberry-Spice Scones with Maple Cream

For more tea posts, go to Tea Time Magazine’s Ham and Cheese Tea Sandwiches

Strawberry Lemonade

So you all know how much I love tea:

But unfortunately, not everyone does. Especially most of my nieces. So what to make for a tea party, that isn’t tea?

Hmmm…

How about some Strawberry Lemonade, made from real strawberries?! That sounds great to me! This recipe comes from Allrecipes

Ingredients:

  • 8 Large Strawberries, Halved
  • 2 Tablespoons of White Sugar
  • 7 Cups of Water
  • 1 Cup of White Sugar
  • 2 Cups of Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

Directions:

  1. Place the strawberries in a blender with two tablespoons of sugar.
  2. Pour in one cup of water and blend until the strawberries become juice.
  3. Combine the strawberry juice, 6 cups of water, 2 cups of Sugar, and lemon juice in a large pitcher. Stir until blended.
  4. Chill before serving.

So this was extremely good! I used Meyer’s Lemons and if you do that you want to reduce the sugar as they are sweeter than regular ones. But otherwise it was fantastic and came out a pretty coral orange color.

For more lemon recipes, go to Ginger Cardamom Meyer Lemon Crinkle Cookies

For more drink recipes, go to Skinny Chai Tea Latte

For more recipes, go to The Picture of Earl Grey Tea Cookies

Scottish Oatcakes

I was cleaning out my old room at my parent’s house and I found a pile of papers with recipes on it.

What is this?

I have no clue where this came from, but it sounded good and easy to make. And perfect for tea! (You know me, I’m always looking for something new for tea time.)

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup of Rolled Oats
  • 1/3 Cup of Flour
  • 1/2 Tsp of Sugar
  • 1/4 Tsp of Salt
  • 1/4 Tsp of Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Cup of Unsalted Butter, Cut into Pieces
  • 2-3 Tbsps of Water
  • Honey (Optional)
  • Marmalade (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat Oven to 325 degrees F
  2. In a food processor fitted with metal blades, process oats to a fine meal.
  3. Add the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, and butter.
  4. Process briefly to mix well.
  5. With motor running add 2-3 tbsps of water and process 20 seconds to form a crumbly dough.
  6. Add as much water as needed to achieve the desired texture.
  7. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface.
  8. Knead a couple of times to incorporate any crumbs, then form into a ball.
  9. Cut in half.
  10. Using a rolling pin, roll out each half into rounds 6 inches wide an 1/4 inch thick.
  11. Crimp edges with your finger and thumb to make a fluted border.
  12. Using a metal spatula, transfer he rounds to a baking sheet and cut into four equal wedges. separate the wedges slightly then prick the top of each one 3 or 4 times with a fork.
  13. Bake until pale and tan and no longer soft (about 25-30 mins)
  14. Transfer the oatcakes to a wire rack to cool.
  15. Serve with honey or marmalade, if desired.
  16. Makes about 8.

So the first one is when I didn’t pay close attention to the recipe, while the second is from following the directions.

These were fantastic! So good, and perfect with your tea!

I would ground the oats in the processor or blender, but when you get to the water just put it in a bowl and use your hands.  Otherwise, delicious!

For more recipes, go to Earl Grey Infused Blueberry Smoothie

For more items to go with your cup of tea, go to Carrot Oatmeal Muffins

Slow-Cooker Bread

Yum!

I love bread. I could eat it, non-stop.

So you probably saw this pic on facebook/instagram, about me making bread. Usually bread takes quite a bit of time, but my friend shared this post on pinterest with me about making bread in your crock-pot!

Huh?

It was delicious and easy, so I felt I should share. It originally comes from delish.com

Ingredients:

  • 1 Envelope of Active Dry Yeast
  • 1 Tbsp of Sugar
  • 1.5 Cups of Lukewarm Water
  • 3.5 Cups of Flour
  • 2 Tbsp of Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tsp of Salt

Directions:

  1. Line a crock-pot with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine yeast and sugar.
  3. Add water and stir until combined.
  4. Add flour, olive oil, and salt; stir until combined and a shaggy dough begins to form.
  5. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough until it becomes smooth and soft, about 5 mins.
  6. Roll dough into a ball, then place in a slow cooker.
  7. Cook on high until golden brown and cooked through, about 2 hrs.
  8. Carefully remove bread from slow cooker.
  9. To crisp up the crust, transfer bread to a baking sheet and broil until golden, 2-3 mins.
  10. Let cool for 20 mins and serve warm or at room temp.

So delicious!!!!

For more recipes, go to Basic Shortbread

For more pinterest recipes, go to Blueberry Earl Grey Tea Smoothie

Baked Apple Slices

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

This year I have a lot to be thankful for-1) Being alive-my ex-husband was abusive and tried to kill me; 2) My 5-year restraining order and the fact that my divorce was finalized 10/24/18-thank you California!; 3)My friends, family, and faith who have gotten me through this; 4) And this blog and all you readers!

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday however you spend it. I am course am going to spend it with food:

So what would Jane Austen be eating if she was celebrating the American holiday?

Last year I shared a recipe for apple pie, I thought this year I would share one for baked apples which make a great breakfast, side dish, or dessert.

This comes from my sister blog MysteriousEats.wordpress.com

Ingredients:

  • 1 Granny Smith Apple-Peeled, Cored, and Sliced
  • 2.5 Tablespoons of Water
  • 1.5 Tablespoons of Cornstarch or Flour
  • 1.5 Tablespoons of Sugar
  • 1 Pinch of Cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Spread the apples slices in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  3. Whisk the water and flour together, and pour over the apples and gently stir.
  4. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon.
  5. Cook for about 15 mins.

 

 

Delicious!

For more Thanksgiving posts, go to Are Dean Winchester and Jane Austen Kindred Spirits?

For more recipes, go to Blueberry Earl Grey Tea Smoothie

For more holiday posts, go to Life Seems But a Quick Succession of Busy Nothings

Triple Berry Salad

So in yesterday’s post, I talked about how I was looking for things to make for my tea party/book club meeting that are Regency-ish but cool for summer.

I was thinking about Emma’s picnic and the strawberries they eat:

I started looking through recipes for a strawberry dish when I remembered a fantastic one that my sister blog Mysterious Eats made.

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 Ounces of Strawberries
  • 6 Ounces of Blueberries
  • 6 Ounces of Raspberries
  • 1/4 Cup of Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup of Water
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract

Directions:

  1. Place sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Bring mixture to a simmer (there will be small bubbles), and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
  3. Remove from heat and cool for 5 mins.
  4. Stir in vanilla extract.
  5. Chill completely in fridge.
  6. Rinse the berries.
  7. Hull the strawberries and slice into 2-3 pieces.
  8. Place all the berries in one bowl.
  9. Just before serving, drizzle the berries with the vanilla sugar syrup.
  10. Toss gently.
  11. Serve

Thoughts After Cooking:

What did I think?

It was just the perfect blend of everything and absolutely delicious.

For more recipes, go to Aunt Neal’s Old-Fashioned Tea Cakes

For more Jane Austen quotes, go to Hot Humid Days are Reading Days

Every Month at the Quarter Moon There’ll be a Monsoon

So I have experienced quite a lot of terrible rainstorms.

rainbreakfastattiffaneyscat

When I was nine there was a tornado warning on my birthday. (My birthday takes place in a season where there is zero rain, so it was a really random year.) There ended up being no tornado, but it was really rainy and windy.

I don’t remember it being too bad as we didn’t have to do anything in school but hng out (away from the windows, and we all got picked up from school early. I spent the rest of the day chilling, happy birthday to me.

gloomyrainydays

Then there was the time I went to Arizona right in the middle of monsoon season. The rainstorms don’t last long, but they are extremely powerful and crazy. And of course because this happens only one week out of the year, they don’t build the buildings with the capacity to handle such storms, i.e no rain gutters to catch the rain or storm drains. There was water coming from everywhere. It was like Jumanji.

At one point my sister and I were running to our hotel room (in our shorts and tank tops as it was too hot for either of us to bring a coat or sweater) and when we almost reached it, we were hit by a waterfall of water streaming off outdoor walkway. We both were totally soaked.

HairaMess

Then there was that time during my freshman year in school were we had crazy rainstorms up until the beginning of May. Things were so bad that one week (right before finals) they canceled classes that met in the lower floors of the buildings and were all issued a flood warning. In fact it got so bad they had to sandbag some of the buildings, as the nearby river began to overflow.

Pocahontas

Then there was Wyoming. Now that rain is tough. It doesn’t pour down on you, but the wind moves so fast that it knocks the rain drops into your body and face, making you feel as if you are being punched by a million tiny fists.

dean_punching_supernatural

The wind completely tore my umbrella, in fact it wasn’t until a second storm weeks later that I was able to find all the pieces of it.

I’m telling you, those Wyoming storms are crazy. I could barely find my way home, and was completely soaked from every inch.

Sadface Batman

But the worst storm happened last Sunday. I woke up, planning on getting ready for church when I looked outside to see water just pouring down from the skies. It was as if a faucet had been turned on full blast. Just gallons of water everywhere! Like you needed an ark to maneuver out of there.

There was no way I was going to drive in that!

Ahhh!

Ahhh!

So I waited until there was a break, but then I had the worst luck ever! As I was driving, the street that goes across one of the freeways’ light was broken!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was totally scary! Cars were just crossing all over the place, barely managing to dodge each other. I swear I saw like ten near accidents as I sat waiting for my turn.

Supernatural impala

I had to wait at least 20 mins, using a car making a left turn as a shield and praying that no one hit me.

pretty please beg

Then later as I was driving, I noticed that on the one way road I was going down, there was a section completely filled with water.

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

There was nothing I could do but go forward. Praying again, but this time that my car wouldn’t get stuck in the water.

Carnival of Souls

I was somehow able to push through, and get to church.

Finally something GOOD!

Of course being California, two hours later the rain had stopped, the sun was out, and the only markers of the deluge were a few puddles.

2013-11-27-bradpitt friends ugh slap face stupid

Well that’s life in the golden state.

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For more adventures in the rain, go to It’s Raining, It’s Pouring

For more on living in California, go to England Dreamin’ On Such a Summer’s Day

For more adventures from my everyday life, go to A Baker’s Four Dozen

christmas-flowers-banner

Now for today’s Christmas Carol, I have chosen When Christmas Comes to Town from The Polar Express. 

polarExpress

I think it is a cute song and my favorite from the film. I thought it was just so beautiful; the lyrics and the very talented voices.

christmas-flowers-banner

For more on The Polar Express, go to 25 More Films of Christmas

For more Christmas Carols, go to God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

 

Stranded for Good

Stranded

I read this book  once about a girl getting stranded in the library and I used to hope something like that would happen to me. Being stranded in a library or bookstore may sound crazy to some but:

SimpleLoveBooks

Like in the movie The Day After Tomorrow, when they are all trapped in the library, that would be absolutely perfect for me.

MeanGirls I know right!

I mean except for the deathly, freezing temperatures; that’s like a dream come true.

survivehurraicainestormbooksreading

Yep that would be pure bliss.

GirlWithBooksLibrary

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For more book-filled posts, go to Smells S’Wonderful