Is there anything more quintessentially British than Afternoon Tea Week?
Afternoon tea was introduced to England in 1840 by the seventh Duchess of Bedford who felt that the period of time between lunch and dinner was too long. She began to ask for a tray of tea, bread and butter and cake to be served at 4 o’clock in the afternoon and soon began inviting friends to join her – the fashionable social event of afternoon tea was born.
Traditional afternoon tea consists of dainty finger sandwiches, scones with jam and clotted cream, miniature cakes and sweet pastries with loose leaf tea. However modern afternoon teas can include more exotic flavours like samosas and filo pastry parcels and are also often served with fizz to mark a celebratory occasion.
We stock a range of items suitable for producing your own afternoon tea at home including sandwich fillings such as smoked salmon and cream cheese – a personal favourite and sliced ham and Cheddar cheese with a Devon chutney from Waterhouse Fayre (we like the simple Devon Apple chutney). We also stock the accompaniments to a classic Devon cream tea including fresh clotted cream from Langage Farm and delicious strawberry jam from Waterhouse Fayre.
Earlier this year our sister company Orchardlea Occasion Foods launched their range of hampers including a Sweet & Savoury Afternoon Tea Hamper. All hampers can be bespoke but in general this one contains a Chunk of Devon sausage roll and traditional pasty, Burts hand cooked crisps, 2 homemade plain scones, 2 homemade chocolate brownies, a jar of Waterhouse Fayre jam, a pot of Langage Farm clotted cream and a box of Devonshire Tea teabags.
For more info on this and their other hampers visit: http://www.orchardleaoccasionfoods.co.uk/gift-hampers/
Let us know how you’re celebrating Afternoon Tea Week via our social media pages below!
Feature image by Tea & Tittle Tattle via https://www.teaandtittletattle.co.uk/vintage-high-teas.html
It’s British Pie Week! To celebrate we are posting recipes for our five favourite pie fillings all this week from Steak & Stilton to Goats Cheese & Butternut Squash. Today’s pie is an old fashioned Fish Pie.
This creamy, cheesy mash topped pie is a bit different from our other recipes. We’ve used smoked haddock, smoked salmon and cod but really this can be made with any fish you like. The mash is enhanced with butter and mature Cheddar as well as breadcrumbs and parmesan for a deliciously crunchy topping.
Ingredients (serves 4):
400g potatoes (preferably Maris Piper), peeled and cut into chunks
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tsp Dijon mustard
200g mature Cheddar, grated
150g cod, cut into chunks
150g smoked haddock, cut into chunks
100g smoked salmon, sliced
1 tbsp breadcrumbs
1 tbsp parmesan, grated
1: Put the potatoes in a saucepan, add freshly boiled water and salt and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until tender, drain and leave to cool.
2: Heat the butter in a saucepan over a low heat, add the flour and stir to a paste. Gradually whisk in the milk and simmer for 3-4 minutes stirring regularly. Then add the mustard and half of the grated Cheddar.
3: Add the fish and stir to combine with the sauce. Cook for 8-10 minutes.
4: Heat the grill and mash the potatoes to your liking with the rest of the grated Cheddar.
5: Transfer the fish mix to a heatproof dish and top with the mashed potatoes. Add the breadcrumbs and parmesan and grill for 10-15 minutes or until the top has turned golden brown. Serve immediately.
Tried this recipe? Tag us in your creations via our social media pages below
Mother’s Day is fast approaching and if you’ve yet to plan something for your amazing mum don’t worry we’ve got you covered. Why not try making your own delicious homemade foodie treats to spoil her rotten from breakfast through to afternoon tea?
We’ve got all the best bits required to treat your mum to a delicious, indulgent breakfast from the traditional full English to more delicate smoked salmon and poached eggs, the choice is yours.
Chinn’s sausages are made in Crediton using locally sourced meat and techniques established over forty years ago. Their flavours range from traditional pork and cumberland to more exotic combinations such as pork & chorizo, spring onion and soy and, our favourite for breakfast, pork & cranberry. These are available to order Monday-Wednesday and are available in packs of 225g (average of 4 sausages per pack) and 450g (average of 8 per pack).
Devon Choice in Teignmouth have been providing our bacon for too long for us to remember, locally sourced and cured on their own premises, their bacon is delicious. We particularly like their smoked English cured bacon which is available in 2.27kg catering and 200g pre-packs.
Sliced black pudding from the Bury Black Pudding Co. is one of our bestsellers. It is made to a recipe dating back almost 100 years and is available in packs of 3/4 slices and also as the whole 1.3kg stick.
Add some grilled tomatoes, fried mushrooms, some sauteed potatoes or hash browns and a slice or two of toast and you’ve got a restaurant quality breakfast.
If your mum is more ‘less is more’ at breakfast why not treat her to some delicate smoked salmon, poached eggs and hollandaise sauce? This light breakfast is utterly delicious and it’s well worth making your own sauce, the smoked salmon for us has be the delicious John Ross Smoked Salmon which is available in 100g packs. If this isn’t your thing a smoked salmon and cream cheese bagel with some fresh, peppery rocket is always a winner that mum will love.
A Devonian cream tea on it’s own or as part of a larger afternoon tea spread is almost ubiquitous with Mother’s Day. Waterhouse Fayre was established in 2004 using their own surplus fruit in South Molton, today they produce a variety of delicious jams and chutneys in their custom built facilities. Try a cream tea with traditional strawberry jam or really push the boat out and try raspberry instead! All of the Waterhouse Fayre jams are available in 320g jars.
Langage Farm have been producing their award-winning creams and yogurts since 1980 and today they are well regarded throughout the county. We think the 200g clotted cream pot made using the milk from Jersey and Guernsey cattle would be perfect as part of a cream tea, but there are also individual 57g and 113g clotted cream pots available and the 907g catering size would be perfect for larger parties.
If you have more time (and patience!) available it is much nicer to make your own classic afternoon tea. Think dainty finger sandwiches, mini cakes and savoury treats; best of all you can tailor your flavours to your mum’s taste and really make her day. For the finger sandwiches the opportunities are endless, pick your mum’s favourites and make a tiny sandwich – easy as that! What about a classic thick cut Devon ham and Waterhouse Fayre chutney? Or a local Devon Cheddar such as Taw Valley Tickler or a Quicke’s Mature with pickle or tomato? Taw Valley Creamery is based in North Tawton and all of their cheeses are handmade by master cheesemakers using locally sourced milk. The Quicke’s have been producing their traditional cloth-bound cheeses for the last 500 years using recipes passed down through the generations.
For some savoury treats try some mini tartlets with creamy Somerset Brie, parma ham and rocket or perhaps cheese scones, pastrami and horseradish canapes or all of the above!
We wish all the fantastic mum’s out there a Happy Mother’s Day and hope you get well and truly spoilt this Sunday!
This festive season we’ve got everything you need to ensure your dinner party, work buffet or simply an evening with friends goes off without a hitch, well the food at least! This time of year is the perfect excuse to show off your culinary skills and create mouth-wateringly good food using the finest ingredients.
A simple classic some smoked salmon and cream cheese canapés will go a long way to pleasing your guests. Try them on some bought in crispbreads with some chive if you’re short on time or try making your own potato cakes with some dill and lemon for extra flourish. Our John Ross smoked salmon is cold smoked over oak chips using the same techniques passed down since the 19th century and is deliciously light and delicate with subtle smoky flavours and goes beautifully with cream cheese.
Another crowd-pleaser and Christmas staple is some baked camembert. This can be made really easy by simply baking the camembert as is and adding some garlic bread or crackers and a nice chutney – we recommend the Pear & Walnut chutney from Waterhouse Fayre as the flavours really compliment the cheese. However if you fancy making more of a centrepiece try baking a tear and share dough ball platter with some rosemary, thyme and cranberries. The dough helps the camembert to keep its shape as well as taking on some of the oozey cheese as it bakes – delicious!
A classic meat and cheese platter is the perfect prepare ahead party option. Mix and match with the meat: some prosciutto, salamis, chorizo, pastrami – anything you and your guests will like. For the cheese we advise to pick a variety of different textures and varieties, a soft creamy brie, firm vintage, tangy blue and a sheeps, cow and goats cheese for a range of different flavours. Add some sunripened tomatoes, salty olives – try some from the Cornish Olive Stall range – grapes and of course some warm crusty bread and you’re good to go.
For a buffet style dinner party the opportunities are endless, hot, cold, meat and vegetarian there are so many options. For the meat eaters try some festive pork and cranberry chipolatas from W F Chinn’s or their pigs in blankets are equally delicious. Chunk of Devon sausage rolls and pork pies in buttery pastry are a must as well as traditional honey-roasted gammon hot or cold from Kittos of Plymouth. For the vegetarians how about an Indian treat with some crispy vegetable samosas or deliciously creamy blue stilton and broccoli quiche.
We hope this has given you some ideas for the festive season, for more info on any of the products we’ve mentioned head over to our website.