Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Tea Leaves....


tea leaves
tea loves
loves tea
lives tea
leaves tea?
~Uniek Swain

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Grandma's Love


Ahh the smells and taste's of a by gone era... Don't ya just love it when you get a whiff of something (good that is :-) )that brings those fond memories of your childhood, wrapped up in grandma hugs, being pampered with hugs and kisses and waiting in anticipation for those special treats been baked in the oven.... the smells tantalizing your taste buds.... 20 minutes felt like forever and 1 hour was a lifetime, especially when you had to wait!!
I remember fruit cake was a staple in my grandma's kitchen and to tell you the truth sometimes it may have been bought or it may of been made but all the same it brings fond memories.... especially at christmas time! The shocking part of this tale is that for most of my life i have loathed fruitcake...... yes and it's all because of SULTANA'S! . I have missed out on many a delicious fruity, boozy ( that probably was a good thing as a child) fruit cakes, christmas puddings, sultana buns, muffins, biscuits because of my severe aversion to those juicy and plump black things your call sultana's.

I remember one day as a child thinking i would give a nice pink iced sultana bun a go while getting looked after by my batchelor uncle with my brother. It was the pink icing that enticed me to even think about trying it and the first bite didnt' seem so bad until i hit a "juicy" mine field of sultana's. Blergh!!! my reaction but i didn't have the guts to tell my uncle i didn't want to eat anymore! So being the clever child that i thought i was... decided to pick them out one by one.... (Without my poor uncle noticing) and throw them under the table. Well i can't remember if it was my brother that dobbed or my uncle was smarter than me ( i think it was the latter) and noticed what i was doing.... and i got found out and severely scolded! I don't think i tried any sultana delights for a long time..... Until i met my hubby who enticed me and made me not only fall in love with him but also sultana's.... and a lot of other foods i thought i hated! (It was physcological i say!)

This boiled fruit cake is a classic flavoured, simple cake full of those good things i now call sultana's! The recipe calls for a cup of cold tea... which really adds a nice colour and flavour to the cake. I would recommend using a good strong black tea such as our English Breakfast Supreme or Ceylon Orange Pekoe.

Granny's Boiled Fruit Cake

375g Packet Mixed Fruit
1 Tsp Mixed Spice
1 Cup Cold Tea (I recommend our English breakfast)
1 Tsp Bi-Carb soda
2 Well Beaten Eggs
Vanilla (Or a splash of rum or brandy)
120g Butter
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup SR Flour
1 Cup Plain Flour
Pinch Salt

First Measure those delicious little juicy sultana's (mixed fruit)


Add Butter, spices, sugar, bicarb and salt and vanilla essence to a saucepan

Add 1 cup of cold tea... (see our recommendations above)

And then........

Boil for 2 Minutes... set aside to cool for 5 minutes.


Fold in beaten eggs and sifted flours.

Bake in a 20cm tin at 160 degrees for 1 Hour or until a skewer comes out clean! 
Cool before removing from tin. Serve with a slather of butter!

Simply Tea Recommendations: This fruity cake calls for a simple flavoured tea and i would recommend none other than our "Simply Tea" blend. It is a good strong fine leaf blend of Ceylon tea . Simply delicious. It is only $7.00 for 100g or $2.00 for a sample bag. Perfect for an afternoon tea accompanied with this delicious and fruity boiled fruit cake.

Simply Tea Blend

Happy Sipping.... and eating! :-)

 P.s. If you loved this recipe... check out our Mini Chocolate Raison Cupcakes.... Yum


Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Tea Posters...

It seems that of late that posters have come back in vogue especially ones with graphically enchanced words and "sayings"! In response to that i thought i would find ones that were related to TEA! Well since i love tea, i run a teashop and there are some really cool ones out there... check them out!


 image from here

Aren't they the cutest things ever!! They would make a great present framed! I was going to put up a yummy blueberry meringue recipe but the files i have been working on have somehow been corrupted or something..... don't you just hate that! That's the thing about technology, you love it when it works, when it doesn't you curse it! So hopefully i can get things worked out soon!

Happy Sipping

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Mae Collection - Tea Time

I was sifting through a few blogs and stumbled across this gorgeous blog called Studio of Mae. Not only is the blog visually exciting and interesting wait until you check out the website "LOVE MAE".  A collection of friends have created a collection of fabric wall stickers in the cutest designs!!! The one i love the most (obviously) is the tea time sticker set.

Mini Tea Time $19.95

Large Tea Time $79.95

A bit about Mae:

Mae is the lovechild of Peta, Bec and Emily. Brought together by a mutual love of sweet, whimsical designs
and the desire to create a working life that complimented their personal lives.
Somewhere among the many late nights, meetings over buttery scones and tea, some happy accidental
discoveries (namely, our adhesive fabric!) and pretty designs, Mae was born.
Mae’s delightful fabric wall stickers are designed with children in mind and are more than happy to be
moved around - and scrunched up, smoothed out and rearranged again and again. They don’t mind a shower
here and there either, after being rough housed by those precious yet impossibly grubby little ones.
As well as being quite good looking, fun and unique, Mae is always doing her best to be kind to the
environment, always supporting local Australian businesses. We use ‘eco’ inks and recycled cardboard
packaging, not to mention our stickers are reusable and with proper care (and even a bit of improper care)
will last for years to come.

Be sure to check out there free downloadable wall paper for you to print out for yourself to decorate with! How great is that! So if your decorating a child's room or just love the whimsical designs be sure to pop on over to there website and pick up some of these gorgeous designs!

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

My High Tea

 On the weekend i hosted a clothes swap with some friends of mine and i also held a high tea and tea tasting of our tea's. I finally finished photoshopping the photo's so i thought i would show your some of the little nibbles that i made. A review of the menu click here.

These little macaroons were absolutely delicious i have to say so myself. It was the first time i have tried my hand at making macaroons and i will say they are quite fiddly and require a little bit of technique and a lot of luck! The end result was stunning and scrumptious.

Macaroons sitting to form a crust before cooking

Rosewater & Orange Blossom Macaroons

225g Pure Icing Sugar
130g Almond Meal
3 Egg Whites
60g Castor Sugar
Yellow,& Red Food Colouring

85g Unsalted Butter
100g Pure Icing Sugar, Sifted
Rosewater Essence
Tsp Orange Blossom Essence


1.    Preheat oven to 120 degrees C
2.    Sift icing sugar and almond meal mixture three times and set aside.
3.    In an electric mixer add 3 egg whites and whisk until doubles in size. While machine is running, slowly add the castor sugar, then whisk until mixture forms firm peaks.
4.    Fold Almond meal mixture into the meringue until the mixture is thick, smooth and glossy. Divide mixture in half and tint one pink and the other orange.
5.     Place in a piping bag and pip 4 – 5cm circles onto a lined baking tray. Leave to rest for 20 – 30 min until macaroons form a skin.
6.    Place the macaroons into a oven, bake for 20 minutes or until macaroons can be lifted from the tray. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before removing from tray.
7.    For the icing add the butter into an electric mixer. Add icing sugar and beat until mixture forms a smooth and glossy paste. Divide in half and add essences to taste.
8.    To assemble macaroons either pipe or spread corresponding icing over corresponding coloured macaroon and sandwich the other side together. Refrigerate to set icing.

Now these little mouthful of delights are a real treat that were so very easy to make. The mocha truffles have a similar taste to a rum ball but with a bigger hit of coconut. I found these cute little mini cupcake papers at our local IGA and thought they suited the truffles perfectly! So cute. They are also gluten free which was great for my ceoliac guests to enjoy with out stressing what was in them.

Mocha Truffles


60g Butter
2 Tbsp Milk
4 Tbsp Sugar
1 Tsp Coffee Powder
1 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
6 Drops Vanilla Essence
1 ½ Cups Desiccated Coconut
Extra coconut or cocoa for coating.


1.    Bring to the boil the butter, milk and sugar. Set aside and allow to cool for about 10 min.
2.    Add coffee, cocoa, vanilla and coconut to cooled butter mixture and stir  until combined.
3.    Roll into small balls and coat with extra coconut or cocoa.
4.    Place in a container in the refrigerator and allow to set firm.

 * For something a little bit more special you could replace the vanilla essence with either rum or brandy.

I made these little strawberry fairy cakes gluten free for my ceoliac guest as well with a lactose free buttercream. They were delicious considering the "allergy" friendly changes. The addition of the strawberries really lifted these little cakes high in the sky!

Strawberry Fairy Cakes


1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
2/3 Cup Sugar
3 Eggs
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
Zest of 1 Large Lemon
1 ½ cups Plain Flour (Or use Gluten Free SR Flour if making for ceoliac)
1 ½ Tsp Baking Powder
¼ Tsp Salt
¼ Cup Milk

2 Cups Icing Sugar
½ Cup Butter, room temperature
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp Milk

Strawberries to decorate


1.    In the bowl of your electric mixer beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy.
2.    Add the eggs one at a time and beat well after each addition. Beat in vanilla and lemon zest
3.    In a separate bowl sift the flour, baking powder and salt. With the mixer on low speed, alternatively add the flour mixture and milk, in three additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
4.    Evenly fill the cupcake papers with the batter and bake for about 18-20 minutes  in a 180 degree oven or until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.
5.    Icing: In an electric mixer cream the butter until smooth and well blended. Add the vanilla. With the mixer low, gradually add the sugar and beat until combined. Add the milk and beat on high speed until the icing is light and fluffy.
6.    To assemble:  cut a medium hole out of the top of the cupcake, cut in half and set aside. Dice up a strawberry and place in hole of cupcake. Dollop or pipe icing on top and place cupcake top halves on top to create “wings” finish off with a slice of strawberry and sifted icing sugar on top.

I just loved these sandwiches that i made for the high tea. They were absolutely delicious and a real treat and looked so cute too. These crust less little delicate finger sandwiches were really easy to make and only required a few items for each type of sandwhich. I made Roast Beef with Watercress and Horseradish and Turkey with Cranberry and Avacado Salsa.

Finger Sandwiches


Roast Beef with Watercress and Horseradish
200g Thinly Sliced Roast Beef
Dijon Mustard
1 Tsp Horseradish
2 Tbsp Mayonnaise
Slivered Almonds

Turkey with Cranberry and Avocado Salsa
200g Thinly Sliced Turkey Breast
Cranberry Sauce
Baby Spinach
½ Avocado
¼ Red Onion, Finely Diced
½ Tsp Garlic
Lemon juice

Fresh Thickly Sliced White & Wholegrain Brown Bread


Roast Beef with Watercress and Horseradish
1.    Mix together horseradish and mayonnaise. Set aside.
2.    Butter two slices of white bread and one slice of brown. On the first slice of white bread spread Dijon Mustard and place roast beef and watercress.
3.    Place brown slice on top and spread with horseradish mayonnaise and sprinkle with slivered almonds, place last piece of white bread on top.
4.    Slice off crusts and slice into thirds and arrange on platter.

Turkey with Cranberry and Avocado Salsa

1.    Place avocado in a bowl and mush with a fork, add garlic, a teaspoon of lemon juice and diced onion and salt & pepper. Mix together and set aside.
2.    Butter two slices of brown bread and one slice of white. On the first slice of white bread spread Cranberry Sauce and place Turkey and English Spinach on top.
3.    Place White slice of bread on top and spread with avocado salsa. Place last piece of brown bread on top.
4.    Slice off crusts and slice into thirds and arrange on platter.

The Tea's that I offered for tasting were flavours that would compliment the little treats that i chose to serve for my high tea. They were:

Strawberries & Cream: A light blend of China and Ceylon teas with a taste of smooth strawberries. Enjoy it hot or serve it iced. (Price: $11.00 for 100g or $2.00 for a Sample Bag)

Strawberries & Cream: Order Now

Cafe Latte: A luscious mixture of milk granules, cocoa bits, chocolate chips and fine coffee bean pieces, all blended with black tea. (Price: $11.00 for 100g or $2.00 for a Sample Bag)

Cafe Latte: Order Now

 Japanese Morning Dew: A delightfully delicious blend of fruity flavours & Japanese tea sprinkled with passion fruit flowers and marigold petals.(Price: $13.00 for 100g or $2.00 for a Sample Bag)

Japanese Morning Dew: Order Now

 Turkish Apple: (I served this as an iced tea) A beautifully sweet and tangy drink, just like sweet apple. Drink hot or cold as served in Turkish Bazaars. (Price: $7.00 for 100g or $2.00 for a Sample Bag)

Turkish Apple: Order Now

I hope that my menu has inspired you a little to throw your own High Tea. It does not have to be complicated but with a few well chosen food items and great tea to match it with your in for a winner!

Happy Sipping....

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Pretty Inspirations.....

Just a few pretty inspirations for high tea's now that spring has hit - get you in the mood to throw a party! Will have some pic's up of the high tea i held over the weekend with some friends of mine! :-)

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Tea N Things

Now that spring is here it's time to start thinking about having a garden party or high-tea with your girlfriends. The flowers are blooming and the bee's are buzzing and the sun is getting warmer everyday.

This weekend i am hosting a "Clothes Swap" Party and High Tea & Tea Tasting at my house with some of my friends. The idea of a clothes swap is  everyone raids their closet of old clothes, accessories and shoes they no longer use  and we all come together and basically rummage through each other's clothes and pick up new outfits for FREE!! Can't get better than that! I am also hosting a High Tea and Tea Tasting to coincide with our clothes swap for something to nibble on and sip on while we are rummaging through each other's clothes.

The tea will be Simply Tea of course and i am hoping to open people's eyes to the wonderful flavours that are out there. The menu that i am planning for the afternoon will be:

The key to preparing the perfect high tea menu is balance. You need to make sure that you have a balance in sweet and savoury selections on your menu and in each of those categories a variety to choose from. There is no "perfect" menu but it comes down to a menu that has been carefully planned and thought of, considering guests allergies (which i have two ceoliac guest coming) time of day and weather.

Strawberry Fairy Cakes

I have anticipated with my ceoliac guests in my menu choice through the following options: Viatnamese Spring Rolls, Bluberry Meringues, Mocha Truffles and Almond Macaroons. These options will be gluten free in all respects and will be placed away from wheat based items such as the sandwhiches and fairy cakes so that they do not become contaminated.

Orange Blossom & Rose Water Almond Macaroons
I have chosen "lighter" menu options as it later in the afternoon that i will be hosting the high tea and this will stop dinner being spoiled for those invited.

Weather consideration is also something you should think about as it can affect your menu choices. If it is going to be cool and wet people aren't going to feel like cold and uninviting items so make sure you check out the weather forecast for the day! Thankfully we will be having beautiful spring weather for this party.

Roast Beef & Turkey Finger Sandwhiches
I will get the recipes and picture of my menu up next week once i have taken some photo's of the finished result! What parties will you be planning for the spring & summer season?

I have just discovered these cutest teapot range. I am hoping to get some in stock on our website! I just love the gorgeous designs and the vibrant colours!
Stump Teapot

Teabag Teapot

Brew- in- Mug

Serenity Teapot

Wholeleaf Teapot
Cafe Style - Tea for One

Curve Teapot

Sen-Cha Tea Set

 Which one is your favourite?

Happy Sipping.....

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Going Nuts For Crunchy Nut Biscuits!

How was you father's day weekend? Hope you all spoiled your dad's (and dad in-laws). I spent the morning with my dad having a smorgasbord breakfast  at our local hockey club followed by lunch with my dad in-law which involved some great thai and great company! I had the Lifestyle Markets on last weekend which was great to do. I wanted to take some photo's of the market to put up on the blog and i even bought my camera to do so and until i went to press the button to take a photo i then realised i forget to bring the memory card! Smart one eh!? So i cannot entertain you now with pictures from the markets! So sorry.  I do however have my weekly recipe to put up for your entertainment and to add to your recipe folders.

My husband was craving something different for breakfast this past week and i picked up some crunchy  nut cornflakes for a bit of a treat. They had this recipe on the side of the box and since my hubby was enjoying the cereal so much i thought i would treat him also to these Crunchy Nut Cornflake Biscuits. Deliciously crunchy and nutty with a pop of sweetness from the juicy sultana's! Perfect to pack in lunch boxes or in your cookie jar for the week!

Makes 14 (Approx)

110g Butter
½ Cup Sugar
1 ¾ Cups Sifted Plain Flour
½ Cup Sultanas
1 ½ Cups Crunchy Nut Cornflakes
2 Tsp Baking Powder
¼ Cup Milk

1.      Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
2.      Cream butter and sugar together in a bowl, add remaining ingredients.
3.      Mix well until mixture resembles a stiff dough.
4.      Roll heaped teaspoons of dough and place on lined baking trays. Press down slightly.
5.      Bake in oven for approximately 15 minutes or until golden brown.
6.      All to cool and store in an airtight container.

Simply Tea Recommendations:  These biscuits have quite a simple nutty flavour and i would recommend serving our Rooibos Original Tea with these biccies. Our rooibos is a 'Super grade' Rooibos herb leaf which has a sofe, sweet aromatic taste

Rooibos is produced from the leaf of a South African herb shrub, not the Camellia Sinesis plant like all other tea's are produced from.This famed South African infusion is healthy, caffeine free and high in antioxidants.

The flavour is sweet with a slight nutty flavour which gives a distinctive reddish brown infusion when brewed.
Due to the low tannins in Rooibos it can be brewed for a long time without becoming bitter, unlike all tea products from the Camelia Sinesis plant.

You can puchase Rooibos Original Tea from our website for $11.00 for 100g or $2 for a sample. If your a chai lover we also have our Rooibos Chai available also for purchase. 

Happy munchinig & sipping!

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~

Friday, September 3, 2010

Fun Friday

I just realised i haven't done a fun friday in a while. Life has just been hectic with moving house, renovating, processing orders and just general life. Do you feel like that sometimes? Spring and summer seem to be even busier with parties and weddings abounding during this time of year. Not that i am complaining, i love a good party. I have found a few "spring" inspired pictures that will get you revved up and ready for this gorgeous season.

What is your favourite thing about spring?

Happy Sipping.....

Visit Us At: The Simply Tea Shop ~ "For The Love Of Tea" ~


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