A Message from Ruth at Antiques And Teacups

Welcome to the blog of Antiques And Teacups! Let's share a cup of tea and talk about the things we love...like teacups, antiques, collectibles, visiting England, antiquing and learning about victoriana and quirky gadgets. Fun!

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Tuesday Cuppa Tea Robert Burns, Heather And Thistles

Hello and welcome to Tuesday Cuppa Tea... this week a celebration of Robert Burns!




Happy Birthday to Robert Burns!

 I love this poem of his:

Then let us pray that come what may
As come it will for a' that...
That man to man the world o'er,

Shall brothers be for a'that.


Robert Burns was born January 25, 1759 and lived until only 1796 and is revered as one of the most famous poets of all time, and certainly the most revered Scottish poet and song writer.  He is called one of the founders of the Romantic era and also as a social reformer. His works were both lyrical, romantic and full of social and political plain spoken opinions.




So we had a Burns Tea in the sunroom... with 2 friends...Scotties from a Scottish tea towel I have...





The heather is from the yard, and the Burns cottage photo in the silver frame from a visit a few years ago...



I managed to find 2 teacups with a Scottish Heather theme... this first one is by Paragon and is called Highland Queen. 




The pattern was named for, and bears the royal warrant  for Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mum, wife of King George VI and mother of the current Queen Elizabeth II, who has Scottish roots. 



The queen grew up at the Bowes-Lyons home of Glamis Castle by Dundee Scotland...



Paragon finally went out of production in 1992 after various mergers ending with the WWRD partnership, when it was discontinued.



This teacup is by Rosina and has a wonderful pattern of different Heathers tied with tartan ribbons...it isn't named. The cup and saucer dates to the 1950s and has the wonderful brushed gold that is seldom done anymore...  Rosina quietly was dropped in the late 1960s by Queen's China who owns the name. Queen's is still in production in a much smaller way than before, but is not using Rosina.




The Scottish Heather seemed so appropriate so I went looking in the garden. We have 3 colors here, but we have had the coldest winter in years, and where there are usually 3 vibrant colors flourishing at this time of year, I found few stems with open bells... I tucked a bit of Forsythia in for color...




I added a few souvenirs of Scotland... an English 1930s souvenir horse brass with the Scottish Thistle...



Thistles, Heather and a good luck hoseshoes on the tea towel...



An English hallmarked for 1959-1960 sterling silver coffee spoon with a Scottish Thistle enamel finial by Mappin & Webb, Birmingham...


And a Shelley, England crested souvenir jam jar made as a souvenir of  the Western coast of Scotland seaside town of Largs from the 1930s.



But what's for tea??? Scottish Shortbread, of course! Small problem...my shortbread pan is a Colonial Williamsburg reproduction I had been wanting to use, as I hadn't for ages...



and the recipe is  from the book and cookbook I have Afternoon Tea by Michael Smith from 1986, 


as I couldn't find my grandmother's one I usually make, but this is very similar!  I used a lonely Shelley Dainty Thistle saucer for a tea plate...and even with baking spray they didn't come out of the pan well...sigh...  The recipe is at the bottom of the post.


Robert Burns birthday is celebrated all over with Burns Night, where whiskey flows and haggis is eaten and generally both the poet and Scots ancestry is celebrated. 





 There are huge Scottish clubs and societies all over the world where this is celebrated, and everyone is asked to wear Tartan. An example of an invitation:


The evening will usually start with the singing or saying of what is called the Selkirk Grace, attributed to Robert Burns:

Some hae meat and canna eat,
And some wad eat that want it;
But we hae meat, and we can eat,
Ans sae let the Lord be thankit.

I have used a Victorian era handmade linen tablecloth made in the 1890s in England with a filet crocheted border with the Selkirk Grace in crochet... I hope you can see it, as it was hard to photograph...





It just fits my little tea table. I picked it up in England several years ago, and it is one of my treasures!



A traditional Burns supper...or party...or tea, has several essential ingredients. Basically those are "neeps and tatties" or turnips and potatoes, a "wee dram" of whiskey....which is where some of the all male celebrations get a bit rowdy, and last but not least, Scotland's national dish...haggis! Haggis is a sheep's intestines stuffed with...okay, you don't want to know. I tried it, and DIDN'T like it! 


Part of the dinner is the Address To The Haggis attributed to Robert Burns which is very long...I guess you need a few wee drams to appreciate it... after it is bagpiped into the room with much ceremony and toasting... Here is a sample:

Address to a Haggis


Fair and full is your honest, jolly face,
Great chieftain of the sausage race!
Above them all you take your place,
Stomach, tripe, or intestines:
Well are you worthy of a grace
As long as my arm.



You powers, who make mankind your care,
And dish them out their bill of fare,
Old Scotland wants no watery stuff,
That splashes in small wooden dishes;
But if you wish her grateful prayer, 
Give her [Scotland] a Haggis!







Walnut Shortbread

The pastry is soft and must be handled with care.  I made mine in a food processor, my first, a gift from our daughter for Christmas...so much easier!

Ingredients
2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup finely crushed walnuts (I prefer Pecans actually)
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
generous 1/2 cup confectioner's (powdered sugar)
2 small egg yolks..or egg substitute
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
Sift the flour and crushed nuts together into a bowl.  Make a well in the center. Mix the softened butter to a paste with the sugar and egg yolks and place in the well.  Gradually draw the flour into the center and mix into the butter forming a soft dough. Roll out on a floured board approximately 1/8 inch thick and cut into 2 inch squares, and transfer carefully to baking pan.


Bake for 8-10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Makes 16-20 shortbread biscuits. There are not too sweet, perfect with a cup of tea.



The Burns Night celebration evening is of course ended with Robert Burns famous song For Auld Lang Syne, preferably to the sound of bagpipes.  Much fun and good food is enjoyed. Sometimes even Burns teas are given, by those not overly fond of the whiskey...that would include me!


My friends and I thank you for joining me for tea! We are looking forward to a great week as the med side effect issues are improving for my Honey, and when he is doing well so am I! I will be joining:



Thanks so much for joining me for tea!  Here is the linky for your tea related posts...please remember that it is SSSLLLOOOOOOWWWW but if you are patient...it's there! And I love to read your comments, and I do read every one if I can find and can get to you to visit!  If you comment from Google+…it isn’t easy...so forgive me if I am not replying to comments you so kindly leave...I am trying!
Also...if I miss your comment or haven't replied, it's because my Honey is having a hard time and TLC is needed...but that will pass, Lord willing!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Tuesday Cuppa Tea - Winter White, Snowman and Almond Tarts For Tea

Hello and welcome to Tuesday Cuppa Tea! The weather is to warm up here finally...hooray!!!



It's been cold and we have had snow...the most for years!  Sorta fun!



So my tea this week has a winter and snowman theme....with Almond Tarts...



My teas are always in a small space...we downsized years ago to a very small single story home...a good thing. We consider it the Grace of God to prompt us to do so, as a couple of years later my husband was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease and the home is sooo much easier for us! 



My light space is the sunroom we made from enclosing a covered patio when we bought the home. We love it and us it a lot...


My snowman..a gift from a dear friend years ago...oversees tea set with snowglobes from my collection and a new addition...a teaset made by Aynsley in the Golden Crocus pattern....




This version of the pattern was only made from 1985-1989. The molded petal shpae however was made for years by Aynsley in different colors and patterns.  



I think the white and gold is so elegant and versatile!




I just love tactile feeling of the pattern. This is the hot water pot...which was so important do hostesses could refill the teapot or dilute the tea if it was too strong. A good thing, because I don't like really strong tea!



And a nice large creamer and sugar basin. I have my favorite Demarara sugar cubes...perfect with this great pair of silver sugar tongs with a crown on top...






Tea today is a dessert tea I really like from Republic Of Tea called Caramel Vanilla which is a flavored black tea and very tasty!  



Would you like lemon in your tea? I recently found this artisan painted lemon dish with a cute gold handle and forget-me-nots. The dish is T&V or Tressemennes and Vogt, Limoges but I think it was purchased plain and then was painted by a talented cottage artist. China painting for ladies was a very popular pastime from the Victorian era until the 1940s...and is probably still happening...



My handmade snowman gift that I love presides...and I have a Snow Buddies snowman snow globe too!








I have added some of my collection of antique New Year postcards...they are so fun...and...Almond Tarts for tea!  I decided to make them when I got my new teapot calendar up on January 1st...I love marzipan, and some of you may remember I was disapointed with the Marzipan Stollen I bought, so I was craving a good almond taste...



They always have the best photos and teaware!



This is the photo from King Arthur Flour where I found my recipe...



And here are mine...I was very happy with the result! A nice almond taste. I baked them in a fluted tart pan I have.  I have put a link to the recipe below rather than just copying it here.

http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/almond-tarts-recipe




So thanks for joining me fo tea today...and a reminder it is still Hot Tea Month! WooHoo!!!   I will be joining:



Thanks so much for joining me for tea!  Here is the linky for your tea related posts...please remember that it is SSSLLLOOOOOOWWWW but if you are patient...it's there! And I love to read your comments, and I do read every one if I can find and can get to you to visit!  If you comment from Google+…it isn’t easy...so forgive me if I am not replying to comments you so kindly leave...I am trying!

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