Cream Tea for Two
London. Home away from home. Perhaps because I've been there more times than I remember or because it was my first trip on my own when I was 15 or because I've lived there for an extended period, London does feel like home to me. My first time was a wonderful adventure (tell you all about it someday!) half a life ago, my last just 4 months back when I flew to London by myself for the Wimbledon semifinals to meet my friend N. - my all-time partner for the tennis - and stay with her and her adorable family for a couple of days.
N. and I became friends years ago. We've been to Wimbledon together a zillion times. Ages ago, I had my first Cream Tea at the Pergola Cafe when pouring rain suspended play (which is something that happens at Wimbledon like... all the time!), and since then when I think of Wimbly, it's not strawberries & cream or Pimm's that come to mind but - you've guessed it - Cream Tea. The Pergola was moved last year to a different location because of works. Both me and N. hated the cold metal chairs and the open-spaced lounge, the tea served in paper-cups and the soulless place. This year, the Pergola was back to its original being, I had my cream tea in the outside wooden chairs in a proper china cup. Even the rain stopped, and the sun made its appearance. Oh perfection!
Mr. Taster and I are leaving for an extended weekend in London. Umbrellas, Rothko's tickets, and a rainy forecast. We're set to go.
Adapted from Bill Granger, Bill's Food
1 Tbsp icing (confectioners') sugar
310 grams (2 1/2 cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt
250 ml (1 cup) milk
30 grams (1 oz) butter, melted
Preheat oven to 220ºC/425ºF/Gas7. Sift the icing sugar, flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Add the milk and butter, and stir to combine. Knead quickly and lightly until smooth, and then press out onto a floured surface.
Use a glass to cut out rounds roughly 5 cm (2 inches) in diameter and 3 cm (1,25inches) deep and place them on a greased baking tray. Gather the scraps together, lightly knead again, then cut out more rounds. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until puffed and golden.
Cream Tea is originally served with clotted cream, which we don't have in Portugal. I served mine with Duchy's Blood Orange Marmalade (that N. sneaked into my bag in the airport), and butter. Duchy Originals is a great brand, and an old favourite of mine.