Sunday, May 22, 2016

Everything's Coming up Roses!

"Love planted a rose, and the world turned sweet."
~Katherine Lee Bates

Hello Tea Friends,
Last week we had a bit of a warm spell which my roses, flowers and budding vegetables gladly welcomed.
The yellow "Mellow Yellow" rose tree became so top heavy that I really had to cut it back as it was almost ready to fall over. So alas, no photos of those pretty roses- just miniature pink ones.

Since the sun is shining and not too hot, please join me in the backyard for a rose tea.

I have been so excited to share my first teacup trio!

While on a recent trip, I found this "Orleans Rose" trio. It's in wonderful condition with most of the gold trim intact.

I've been looking for (an affordable) trio for quite a while. The almost three dimensional paintings of the roses is quite lovely.

This is my first Royal Standard teaware in my collection. It was produced circa 1950's.

Have a slice of cherry cobbler from the cherries we picked yesterday at a local farm. This is one of my true and tried recipes. I featured it on my last year's Memorial Day post. You can find it here.

"Time brings roses."
~ Portuguese proverb

This post was inspired by last summer's visit to Portland's International Rose Test Garden in Washington Park.

Whether you are an avid rose gardener, photographer or someone who appreciates nature's beauty. this park will not disappoint.

Here are just some of the hundreds of roses:

If you are ever in Portland, Oregon, this garden is not to be missed. Here is more information about the park.

While in the gift shop (can't pass up one when on vacation), I saw three tea bags of rose tea tied together on the counter.

 Of course I bought the tea. After all, Portland is the "City of Roses."
I quite enjoyed it and would describe it as light black tea with a subtle floral taste and scent.
(This is my last tea bag and I'm saving it for a special occasion. Sorry, I didn't fill your cup.)

Have a sunshine filled week,

Let's continue the party at: 

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Chai: Tea to Pudding

Happy May!
I have been eager to share with you my new chai tea discovery! Chai is one of my favorite types of tea and flavoring. It has become quite popular and is infused in many other types of foods.
I first discovered chai while on a vacation in Vancouver about twenty years ago. Starbucks was doing a promotion for their latest drink: chai tea latte. Since I wasn't a coffee drinker, I never had been inside a Starbucks before. The promotion lured me in with the enticing "gift" of a free coffee travel mug decorated with various stamps from Canadian provinces.
Well needless to say, I was hooked!
I'm not a huge dessert lover, so this is my treat:
A tall nonfat no water chai tea latte
I adore the mix of sweet and spicy in this chai syrup. Starbucks uses Oregon Chai which can be found in most grocery stores.
(courtesy of amazon)

I can make the latte on my own with the help of a milk frother, but somehow it tastes better when I go to Starbucks. (Yes, it is all in my mind.)

True chai aficionados readily claim that the Starbucks version for which I adore is not proper chai tea. I've been a quest to find an authentic loose chai tea. (I'll work on finding an authentic latte version later.) 
Last October I asked readers if they could recommend a strong loose chai. Kitty @ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen recommended a chai from adagio teas.

I ordered a sample pouch and have been so pleased. This chai is robust not flat and is not too spicy. I drink it black. I think it will make a great iced tea. Need to order more! Thanks Kitty for this recommendation!

Come join me for a chai inspired tea time.

I recently purchased this table linen at an antique store while on a trip. Yellow used to be my favorite color growing up. 

Continuing with the yellow theme, you can drink from this Royal Albert teacup from the Blossom Time Series ~Laburnum.

Chai Cinnamon Pudding
This pudding will be served in vintage dessert glasses gifted to me from my great aunt. It's hard to see, but there is a criss cross etching throughout the bowl.

I'm always on the lookout for tea time treats and this one is incredibly simple to make.

2 Chai tea bags
1 recipe cooled vanilla or chocolate pudding
Ground Cinnamon

1. Brew 2 chai tea bags in 3 tablespoons boiling water; set aside to cool.
2. Squeeze out tea bags and discard.
3. Mix tea into cooled pudding.

4. Dust with ground cinnamon.

Recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart

I think that is the easiest Martha Stewart recipe ever!
I kept it simple and used Jello French Vanilla Pudding with Twinings Chai Tea. I don't know if I would recommend using chocolate pudding for this recipe.

Makes a nice morning or after dinner treat!

Since my "Mellow Yellow" rose bouquet was down to a single flower, I added this figurine to the table. I've had it since I was a baby and no one can recall who gave it to me. The bottom reads "Western Germany" with a gold insignia that is difficult to read. 

Have a beautiful week,

Please join me for tea at these parties: