Monday, March 29, 2010

Easter Time: Decorating Easter Bunny Cupcakes!

        I am having a hard time believeing that Easter will be with us in slightly over a week!  Wasn't it Christmas just last month?  Where does all the time go, dear bloggerites?  I just finished co-hosting a very informal Easter Tea at my church along with my friends, Ruth and Janet.  It was a lovely time of whimsy, with a few delightful women.  We reminisced about Easters of yesterr-year, spent some time thinking about what the first Easter must have been like for Mary, the mother of Jesus and closed the afternoon off by decorating Easter bunny cuppcakes.  How cute they were, and how delicious, accompanied by fresh fruit and steaming cups of coffee and tea!  There isn't anything I enjoy more than the company of women, and an afternoon of conversation and tea.
      Today I made my final decision about Easter Dinner.What should I serve and who should we invite?  The guest list was the easiest of tasks, as we have those who it has become a tradition to entertain on holidays.  The menu was not so easily decided upon.  As I attempt to graciously accept that I am not getting any younger, I am trying to make preparations as easy as possible.  I think this year, I have managed to keep the prep time to an all-time minimum.  The ham is a pre-bakedand spiral cut, and needs only to be heated to a specific temperature. I am making a scalloped potatoe casserole, one or two vegetables, and a wild rice and barley recipe that is made in a rice cooker and is dead easy to throw together. As an appetizer I am going to do devilled eggs, keeping the eggs in the shell, and serving them in lovely egg cups.  That should be fun and different. For dessert, dear readers, I have done the unthinkable.  I have purchased a FROZEN CHEESECAKE selection from Costco: six different varieties of cheesecake. It was on sale, and frankly, I couldn't make it for the price they were charging.  I have had the Costco cheesecake before and it is quite delicious, so I am throwing caution entirely to the wind, and vowing to take it tres easy this year.  For once, I will not be totally exhausted by the time we sit down to eat. One of my guests has offered to bring the salad, and should another guest offer to bring something else, well then, that will be even less work for me.  I do feel almost guilty about the whole thing, but I am trying hard not to let it bother me too much.  For the past 16 years, I have done the lion's share of the cooking and baking in my home, but, as the British put it, that has become "a bit beyond the rabbit-proof fence" for me at this point. and it has just gotten to be too much.  Perhaps this time next year I will feel different, and go back to the way things used to be, but then again, maybe I won't!  What are your Easter traditions, dear readers?  Do you do any table-scaping?  I am looking for something simple but elegant.  Any ideas?       

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

A Spring Celebration Of Friendship Afternoon Tea:

Hello there dear friends,

It's 'Tuesday Tea For Two', teatime once more.., Please do join us!

Pop over for a visit after you have visited and enjoyed your scones with clotted cream and jam and a freshly brewed pop of Rosey Lee in Scone Queen's, Old Country Roses, china teaset!:

Just a little note from moi, a.k.a./ Silken Purse; a guest blogger today at Scone Queen's lovely, The Tea Trolley blog.

Today is,Tuesday Tea For Two, at my The Plumed Pen blog, once more:
Whereas my dear friend Scone Queen and I have been friends for many years; in fact I have known her since I was 12 and she was 14; today dear friends, we have decided to collaberate with a special teatime blog posting!.., (Yet with reference to our respective ages, we shall not reveal how old we are now)!..,Hehe!~ Scone Queen was originally an aquaintance of my older sister, then much to my delight and thanksgiving to the Lord, over the years we became fast friends!

When dear Scone Queen created her second blog, we had thought that partnering with regard to occasional guest blogging at each others respective blogs would be lots of fun!~(Her other delightful blog is aptly named; Tea By 2).~ I do hope she will also grace the pages of my blog sometime soon, as she is an exceptionally gifted writer, as well as being very knowlegeable in her own right on the subject of Afternoon Tea!.., (I'm sure Scone Queen would not mind in the least, if); I also warmly, and with loving embrace of friendship, referring to a dear friend, (who shall remain nameless):~ This other dear personal friend, (whom if reading this), may just recall a similar offer to guest blog and be ever so delightfully supported should she ever decide to create her own meme; a little 'birdie told me that she would 'give me a heads up', so to speak, when she is ready with her sweet surprises..,wink!

The delights of Afternoon Tea and a precious friendship spanning many years, are numerous, dear friends:

The rich, wonderfully soothing and refreshing repast of many an Afternoon Tea for us, is delightfully full of poignant memories, shared laughter and dreams; (even tears, as we arranged  together for a soothing tea to be held after her dear mother's passing).~ These precious teatimes have proven to be a lasting bond of friendship and common interest between my dear friend Scone Queen and I, over these many years! ~ Alas, we are separated by thousands of miles as we reside on the opposite ends of our nation, the coastal regions of Eastern and Western Canada, respectively. We do most thankfully, enjoy frequent conversations by phone however.

Do you have a special friend with whom you share Afternoon Tea, (or perhaps coffee), and with whom you also share many precious memories?.., Please do tell!

Scone Queen and I would dearly enjoy to hear of your pleasant memories of friendships further enchanced over a piping hot and fragrant pot and a pretty cup of Rosey Lee or coffee, as you enjoyed your very own, Tea For Two or coffee hour with your dear friend!

*Please do leave a comment and also kindly consider following me; that  way it is easy to stay in touch!~ I will be delighted to visit you as well!

Warmest Regards from Scone Queen

*Photo credits: China, Old Country Roses teacup with pretty molded sugar @ 'Michele's Treasures,Teacups, And Tumbling Rose Cottage' blogspot blog.~ Blue and white teacup picture @ Google Images.~ Molded bunny sugars in Sugar bowl @

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Top O' The Marnin' to Ye! Tis a Lovely Day to be Irish! Happy Saint Patrick's Day to One and All!

This week I am partaking with Wanda Lee's 22nd, 'Tuesday Tea For Two' blog afternoon tea party @

It has been ever-so-long since I blogged!  My, but the time just seems to speed by and before you know it we will be looking at a full-fledged spring here on the West Coast of Canada!  We have alredy had the crocuses, the daffodils are now in bloom, along with the forsythia and the flowering crab trees, and yet, there are mornings when it is still necessary to scrap the frost from the windshield of the car!

But one of those lovely harbingers of Spring is about to be upon us, and I couldn't let Saint Patrick's Day go by without offering you a wonderful recipe for 100% Whole Wheat Irish Soday Bread!  This is an absolutely scrumptious recipe, and so light and delectable, I am seriously conidering serving at tea INSTEAD of my traditional scones.  It is very toothsome, and a slight bit sweet, without being too overpowering andt tastes like heaven when served warm with butter and a wee bit of honey.  Try it and see if you don't agree that it would be a lovely alternative to the sweet and less-healthy scone.  Do let me know your opinion!

100% Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread
makes two 9 inch round loaves

4 cups whole wheat flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 c. ( 4 tblsp.) cold butter cut into small squares
1 1/4 c. raisins or currants or a combination of both
1 egg beaten
1 3/4 c. buttermilk ( or 1 1/2 c. plain yogurt and 1/4 c. milk)
1 tablespoon molasses or honey

1.   In a large mixing bowl, combine and whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

2.   Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until it resembles coarse meal.

3.   Add raisins or currants

4.   Combine liquids seperately and add 1/2 to dry ingredients, mixing thoroughly with a fork before adding the  second half.

5.   When the dough becomes hard to mix with the fork, use your hands to combine the ingredients completely, kneading it right in the bowl until it is smooth. (about three minutes)

6.   Shape the dough into the two balls, and place them on a greased or parchment-lined cookie sheet.  Flatten each ball slightly and cut an  X  about 1/4 inch deep in the top of each loaf.

7.  Bake at 375 degrees F. for  35

Dear Reader, I do hope you will try this recipe as it is suprisingly delicious! Kind of like that wonderful pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!

Hugs and blessings from Scone Queen

Please do leave a comment, I would love to hear from you!