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, March 26, 2017

Tuesday Cuppa Tea, Shelley Harebell, Orange Marmalade Cake

Here it is, the last week of March! Amazing!  Welcome to Tuesday Cuppa Tea! With the time change, it is really seeming to be changing to spring quickly...

I have had all my favorite ooks out in the afternoon in the sunroom for tea, and so enjoy browsing through them... 

Many of you have Edith Holden's Books, but this is a contemporary of hers that is another lovely journey...

The book The Seasons by Louis Lawrence, an artist and lover of poetry who compiled and illustrated the book in the 1880-1890s, although it wasn't published until 1981 in Canad by a descendent....

The illustrations are charming...like these sweet spring lambs...

And lots of other flora and fauna and famous poets...

It's always difficult to photo a framed art piece, but I did this spring cross stitch from a Victorian pattern in 1998 and was deciding where to hang it...I tend to move them around...so it was a temporary tea back drop...

A favorite book and some favorite Shelley china items...

The book is Victoria's Heart Of England from 1999.  This one lives in my sunroom and is perused often. 

I do have several others left at Antiques And Teacups. We sold cases of them when we had our bricks-and-mortar antiques and tea items shop, bt when we closed it in 2003 the few we had left went into storage.  About a year ago I found about 10 in a forgotten box at the back of the warehouse, and listed them on my website...I have 3 left. They are gorgeous!

This teacup is the Harebell pattern of Shelley China, England in the Low Oleander pattern number 13590, made between 1950 and 1960 when the pottery closed.  In the 1980s, this was one of the most popular Shelley shapes, but that goes in fads. Currently it's the Footed Oleander shape that is more popular. In a few years...who knows???

I especially love the molded flower petals of the design...so tactile!

My teapot is by Sadler in a design called Ivy House in the line called English Country Cottages.  They are all so cute, but I just heard from the pottery that they have discontinued making all the cottage shapes...so sad!

My tea today is a blend of Darjeeling from Wedgwood. I got this from an English tea supply store in the UK, but Judith at Lavender Cottage says it is also available in Canada. I have had several blends, but I do love Darjeeling!

I also am using another of my Shelley Teacups...this a teacup trio in the Primrose Chintz pattern with a solid cobalt blue exterior. Love the sweet spring primroses inside. You can see more on the plate below...

And for tea this week I made an Orange Marmalade Loaf Cake....recipe follows...from The Times originally...

  Orange Marmalade Loaf Cake

·                2/3 cup  coarse-cut orange marmalade, divided
·              12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, plus 1/2 tablespoon for glaze, and more for     greasing pan
·             3/4 cup granulated sugar 
·            2 teaspoons grated lime zest
·           ½ teaspoon grated orange zest
·           3 large eggs, at room temperature
·           2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
·           1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 
·           1 1/2 tsps baking powder 
·           3/4 tsp grams fine sea salt 
·           4  tablespoons confectioners’ sugar 
1.      Heat oven to 350 degrees. Coarsely chop any extra-large chunks of peel in the marmalade. Grease a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan.
2.      In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together softened butter, sugar, lime zest and orange zest until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Beat in 1/3 cup marmalade and the orange juice.
3.      In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Fold dry ingredients into wet until just combined.
4.      Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake until surface of cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center emerges clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Remove from oven and transfer pan to a wire rack. Cool 10 minutes; turn cake out of pan and place on rack right-side up. Place a rimmed baking sheet under rack to catch the glaze.
5.      Heat remaining 1/3 cup marmalade in a small pot over low heat until melted; whisk in confectioners’ sugar and 1/2 tablespoon butter until smooth. Slather warm glaze over top of cake, allowing some to drizzle down the sides. Cool completely before slicing.

Thanks so much for joining me for tea!  Here are the blog parties I am joining...

And here is the Tuesday Cuppa Tea linky for your tea related posts...please remember that it is SSSLLLOOOOOOWWWW but if you are patient...it's there! Depending on my health…I am so looking forward to visiting you!

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Tuesday Cuppa Tea, Irish Lingers Still, Irish Cream Shortbread

Well, it's Tuesday Cuppa Tea with a last Irish fling... Because most of the time around St. Patrick's Day was taken up with recovering from being with our son and dil...like laundry catch up etc, I didn't get to make something that I will share today for Tuesday Cuppa Tea!

I got out a recipe I found last year but hadn't made, planning to make it for our son and dil, but...didn't happen. So...a bit of lingering Irish...

I still had a table topper I had made out with shamrocks and copper flecking, so I folded it for the tea tray in the sunroom when we had a bit of sunshine yesterday...

We ahve a cup of a new Irish Breakfast tea in a china pattern called Georgian in the green colorway from Allerton's England dating to the 1930-1940s. The date spread is because there are different date marks on the pieces of the teaset.

One of the indicators of the age of a teaset is the size of the sugar bowl or sugar basin. The older sets have large open sugar basins, because sugar came in lumps or cubes. The newer sets have smaller bowls, and almost all from the 1950s on have lids to the sugar bowls....

I love the hand painted gold detailing on the creamer handle...

This is the new Irish tea I got a few weeks ago at a local grocery that often has imports. The tea is Thompson's Irish Breakfast. I had never tried it, but it is s nice full bodied black tea with a lovely blend of teas. A perfect breakfast black tea.

I had forgotten to take another photo of the teacup trio and mark for the china, so put it on my little table after I'd put the tea tray away...My cottage cross stitch is England, but it could be Ireland as well!

And for tea... here is Irish Cream Shortbread from King Arthur's Flour. The flavoring is Irish Cream whiskey, and I usually have Bailey's Irish Cream lurking in the fridge, so had decided to make it....It turned out to be rich, very nice, but not especially redolent of Baieys, so I would change that and imcrease the amount. The recipe from the King Arthur website:


25 mins. to 30 mins.
32 mins. to 38 mins.
2 hrs 12 mins. to 2 hrs 23 mins.
16 shortbread wedges

  • 8 ounces soft butter
  • 3 3/4 ounces firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons Irish whiskey (optional; use 1 teaspoon vanilla if desired)
  • 8 1/2 ounces King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 ounces white rice flour


  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Prepare your shortbread mold according to the manufacturer's directions by very lightly greasing and flouring the mold. Or lightly grease two 8" round cake pans.
  2. Beat the butter until smooth.
  3. Beat in the sugar, salt, and whiskey or vanilla until fluffy.
  4. Mix in the flour and rice flour.
  5. Divide the dough in half; each half will weigh about 11 ounces. Wrap and chill for 1 hour.
  6. Press half the dough into the shortbread mold (or half into each of the 8" cake pans).
  7. Prick the dough all over with a fork to prevent it from puffing.
  8. Bake until the shortbread is golden, 32 to 38 minutes. Check at 18 minutes; if shortbread's puffing up; use a flat spatula to press the dough down into the mold. Continue to bake until golden.
  9. Remove from the oven, cool for 15 minutes, then loosen the edges of the shortbread with a table knife before turning the mold over onto a flat surface.
  10. Tap the bottom of the mold several times until the shortbread comes out.
  11. Cut each round into 8 wedges using a serrated knife.
  12. Store shortbread, well wrapped, for up to a week; freeze for longer storage.

But homemade is just better than anything you can purchase...and better for me too...not some many perservatives that I am allergic to.

This is our son and daughter in law at a special dinner we had during our time with them celebrating our 43rd anniversary. Sure miss them...

So thanks for joining me for Tuesday Cuppa Tea! I amjoining the following blog parties...

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! Depending on my health…I am so looking forward to visiting you!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The Queens Drop Scones | Town and Country Magazine

Town and Country magazine posted a recipe to their page last month that I have wanted to share...but what will health and family visits I haven't yet...so thought I would today.

This is the recipe Queen Elizabeth II serves to guests...no, I somehow don't think she dons an apron and makes them herself... but they are from her kitchen according to the magazine. The recipe is actually almost identical to my Nana's recipe. We had them every week or so with Lyle's Golden Syrup and icing (powdered) sugar.  Anyway, here is the recipe...

Ingredients (Enough for 16 people):
4 teacups* flour
4 tablespoons caster sugar
2 teacups* milk
2 whole eggs
2 teaspoons bi-carbonate soda
3 teaspoons cream of tartar
2 tablespoons melted butter.
How to make:
Beat eggs, sugar and about half the milk together, add flour, and mix well together adding remainder milk as required, also bi-carbonate and cream of tartar, fold in the melted butter.
Her recipe ends there, but seeing as these are similar to pancakes, one can then assume the batter would be dropped into a pan by the spoonful and flipped when bubbles started to appear on the surface.
*One teacup is approximately equal to half a cup.

The video is from the article as well. 

To see the article in it's entirety, visit this link...
Queen Elizabeth's Drop Scones Town & Country magazine


Sunday, March 12, 2017

Tuesday Cuppa Tea St Patrick's Day, Dublin Visit

Welcome to a St. Patrick's Day post of Tuesday Cuppa Tea!  Our kids have just flown home yesterday...miss them already, and I am feeling much better!  Thanks so much for the lovely comments. messages and emails. You tea friends are the best!

So here's wishing you a Happy St. Patrick's Day, because on St. Patrick's Day...everyone's Irish!

My teacup today is really three Shelley Irish themed ones...

An early Shelley from the Late Foley period, meaning they were producing at their Foley pottery (Foley is a district of Stoke-on-trent) between 1908 and 1916. The pattern is of course, Shamrock, and it is in the Bute shape.  This is from my archives.

Then we have the later version of Shamrock in the Dainty shape, made between 1940 and 1966 when the pottery closed. Same pattern, different era and shape. But still so Irish!  Available at Antiques And Teacups.

And lastly a Shelley landscape design called Old Ireland that was made for the Canadian market. This teacup is  in the Cambridge shape and was made 1940-1966. From my archives. Shelley does so many wonderful teacups! 

Tea Time magazine had this lovely photo of a Belleek, Ireland teaset last year. I don't have that, but I do have a Belleek Shamrock creamer and sugar in a Shamrock pattern. I love Belleek, don't you?

This is the time of year I always remember Ireland. I was last there a couple of years ago but in early May. And, being Dublin...we had to visit the home of my husband's favorite beverage....

The Guinness Storehouse, as it's called, is a big tourist attraction as well as a working brewery and pub. I am not a beer drinker, let alone a stout drinker, so can't stand it. But my husband was raised with it...I do not say that inadvisedly, as Guinness was touted as pretty well a cure for anything, and even suggested for children. As my husband was an asthmatic, sickly child, he was given it as a child. This was an ad board from the time...

Amazing now...but then Coca Cola with the original cocaine ingredient was touted as that as well...as well as radium laced water and medications at one time, so...no surprise..But I digress...when he went to Guinness, I did what any red blooded American woman in Dublin would do...head to Grafton Street and go shopping!

Brown Thomas is a department store with a wonderful tea room...but I didn't think to take photos...and no selfies! I guess I was way beyond the times...to confess, can't get into selfies today either!

I found I had a little Irish cookbook...

This is A Little Irish Cookbook by John Murphy and here is the illustration by Karen Bailey of the Irish scones...

I made them, but made the in wedges which is our favorite...

Here is the simple recipe:

2 cups self raising flour
3 tbs butter
1/2 cup milk...I use almond milk
pink of salt and I added 2 tbs of dried currants

Sieve the flour into a bowl and rub in the butter quickly and lightly with the fingertips. Add the salt and then using a round bladed knife, mix in the milk a little at a time.  With floured hands knead lightly to a soft dough, adding a bit more milk if necessary. Roll out evenly to about 1 finger thick on a floured board. Cut out and cook on a greased cookie sheet close to the top of a pre-heated oven at 425 degrees for 12-15 minutes.  They are best eaten for tea and do not store well.

So thanks for joining me...hopefully things will get back to normal...when I catch up with the housework! Lol! I am joining this week...

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! I am so looking forward to visiting you!


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