Here at RPS and CICO Books, we’re all big fans of a spot of afternoon tea and cake (or anytime tea and cake) and Liz Franklin’s gorgeous Tea and Treats has some delightful ideas for variations on this classic. In the hope that the weatherman’s predictions of slightly warmer weather come true, we’ve optimistically picked a lovely summery one for this weekend. Perfect after a spot of Saturday gardening, or a leisurely Sunday stroll, we hope you love these sweet treats as much as we do. So come rain or shine, pop the kettle on and enjoy!
Mint and Summer Berry Iced Tea with Strawberry and Rosewater Cream Meringues
This is a lovely summer tisane, and not technically a true tea, although you could add green tea to the pot if you wish. Vary the berries according to what’s available, but a mixture looks pretty. Don’t be too heavy-handed with the sweetening, as the meringues are deliciously and indulgently sweet! Be sure to use unsprayed roses.
4 egg whites
200 g caster sugar
1–2 drops pink food colouring or grenadine
For the filling
300 ml double cream
2 teaspoons caster sugar
2 teaspoons rosewater
250 g strawberries, quartered
white and pink rose petals
1 egg white, beaten
2 tablespoons caster sugar
2 baking sheets, lined with baking parchment
an electric hand whisk
a piping bag (optional)
Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F) Gas 2.
Whisk the egg whites in a scrupulously clean bowl until firm (unless you’re training for the Olympics, an electric hand whisk is probably best for this). Add the sugar about a tablespoon at a time, and keep whisking until all the sugar has been incorporated. Gently fold in the food colouring.
Using two spoons (or a piping bag if preferred), place small dollops on the prepared baking sheets, spaced a little way apart. Bake for about 20 minutes, then switch off the oven. Leave the meringues in the oven until cold.
In the meantime, whisk the cream, sugar and rosewater together, until the cream has thickened. Dip the rose petals lightly into the egg white, then gently into the sugar to coat. Leave to dry.
Sandwich the meringues together with the cream and strawberries and pile them onto a serving platter. Scatter over the rose petals and serve.
For 1 pot of tea
1 large bunch fresh mint, plus extra to serve
caster sugar, to taste
ice cubes, to serve
250 g mixed summer berries
Put the mint in a teapot and pour over boiling water. Muddle the leaves (as if you were making a mojito) and leave to cool and infuse. Pour into a glass jug and refrigerate until very cold. Remove the leaves and pour into 4 tall glasses. Add ice cubes, summer berries and mint leaves and serve with straws.
Tea and Treats by Liz Franklin is available here.