Saturday, 26 September 2015

Afternoon tea cake stand

Whenever I think of a tea party or afternoon tea I always think of those tiered cake stands laden with pastries, cakes and mini sandwiches.  I found this beautiful glass cake stand on ebay and the food sort of made itself! I researched some ideas of different foods to include then came up with this  selection of afternoon tea party treats: pastel coloured macarons, fruit scones, chocolate eclairs, strawberry cream tarts and tuna finger sandwiches.  I wanted to create something typically 'English tea party' and  refined in my table packed full of quaint and whimsical food and this is what I came up with!



"Eat Me" biscuits

"Soon her eye fell upon a little glass box lying underneath the table. She opened it and found in it a very small cake, on which the words "EAT ME" were beautifully marked in currants"
                                                                  - Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Scene from Disney's Alice in Wonderland (1951)

Alice discovered the 'Eat Me' biscuits when trying to grow again in size after drinking the 'Drink Me' potion.  These are an important plot device and memorable food item within the book so I have included them here on my Mad Hatter's tea party table just in case anyone drinks too much of the shrinking potion!
I designed these biscuits to match the pastel colours I used in Alice's 'Merry Un-birthday' cake and gave them a pretty vintage floral design.  There are fourteen biscuits (or cookies) in total, eight heart shaped and six circular, each with a separate design and colour scheme.  The look I wanted to achieve here is a fondant topped biscuit with finely piped lettering and designs.  This is my own Dinky Diner version of the 'Eat Me' biscuits!
The biscuits are fixed to a large pink ceramic serving plate.



"Drink Me" potion

When I began planning my tea party table and was thinking of all the things I associated with Alice in Wonderland, the 'drink me' potion was right up there on the list! Although Alice did not find the magical shrinking potion at the tea party she did remark that it had a wonderful flavour which was a mixture of cherry tart, custard, pineapple, roast turkey, toffee and hot buttered toast! How yummy!  
Alice first found the potion after falling down the rabbit hole when she chased after the White Rabbit and found herself in a room with no way out apart from through a tiny little door.  When Alice drank the strange potion she shrunk to ten inches high and was able to go into the beautiful garden which was on the other side of the door.
The potion bottle is made of fine artisan made glass with a blue liquid inside and a tiny "drink me" label tied around the neck.


Profiterole tower

Could you imagine a tea party with a gigantic tower of fresh cream filled profiteroles and smothered in rich milk and dark chocolate sauce? Yes, I'd want to be there too!



Merry Un-birthday cake

"A very Merry Un-birthday to you!" the Mad Hatter and March Hare sang to Alice at the tea party in the 1951 Disney film.  Lewis Carroll popularised the term 'unbirthday' which basically describes any day where it is not the recipient's birthday.  I wanted to create a special cake for such an occasion but not something which would steal the attention away from the centrepiece cake.  I chose pastel colours and gave my cake a delicate, decoratively piped look as  I wanted to achieve a cake with a timeless vintage quality especially for the guest of honour: Alice.  There are even some little blown out candles at the base!



Chocolate and strawberry layer cake

This is a chocolate and vanilla sponge layer cake sandwiched with chocolate buttercream, covered with dark chocolate ganache and topped with halved fresh strawberries.  There are two loose slices cut out of the cake which comes displayed on a glass domed cake stand with a fine paper doily.




Breakfast, lunch, tea time or supper...I love hot buttered crumpets and could eat them all day long! They just go perfectly with a cup of tea!



Rocky Road bars

Rocky Road (also known as chocolate tiffin or chocolate fridge cake) is a no bake chocolate snack bar made with melted chocolate, golden syrup and a little bit of butter mixed together with ingredients such as dried fruit, biscuits and nuts. 
My  Rocky Road bars have little pieces of pistachio nuts (green) marshmallows (pink and white) and digestive biscuits (beige) inside.  I made a slab of my tiffin mixture and cut into eight squared pieces so it looked like it had been poured and set inside a deep tray (as you would do if you had made this in real life!) Mmmm delicious!

Cheshire Cat chocolate cupcakes

This is proof you never can have too many cupcakes at a tea party! These are Cheshire cat themed cupcakes which I have made using colours inspired by the cat's  striped pink and purple fur.  There are six chocolate cupcakes (each with magenta and purple paper cases) topped with dark chocolate ganache and boiled sweets and one with the Cheshire cat's face made from fondant.  All the cupcakes are fixed to a fluted glass serving plate.




Also included at the Mad Hatter's tea party table are these delicious doughnuts with pink icing and rainbow sprinkles... So adorable and without any of the calories you'd find in a real doughnut!