Halloween is on the way and this year Richmond will be celebrating with a Halloween themed afternoon tea.
The story of Halloween has been passed down through generations. There are traditions and adaptations that still continue today that have their history in ancient ceremonies and superstitions. These have evolved into what we know and love today about Halloween.
At Richmond our favourite is this traditional recipe which makes 24 mini pumpkin pies. If you would like to try these yourself, here is what you need!
PIE CRUST (all ingredients should be really cold)
1¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup butter (chopped)
¼ cup butter-flavoured shortening
¼ cup cold water
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup white sugar
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1 medium sized egg
½ cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon flour
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (can add more if desired)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup canned pure pumpkin
Preheat oven to 180°c
In a medium size bowl whisk together flour, sugar and salt.
Cut in butter and shortening until crumbly.
Stir in cold water.
Stir until dough forms.
Press dough into a disk.
Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
In a large bowl combine white sugar, brown sugar and butter until creamy.
Mix in egg, heavy cream, flour and vanilla until creamy.
Fold in pumpkin. Batter will be speckled.
When pie dough has chilled remove it from fridge and knead lightly a few times.
Flour a work surface and pat dough out about ¼ inch thick.
Use a small round cookie cutter to cut out 2-inch circles.
Place the dough circles into a non-stick mini muffin pan.
Press the perimeter of the pie dough so that they completely fill the tin. Use a fork to create ridges on the mini pie crusts if desired.
Place the batter into the pie crusts using a mini ice cream scoop.
Shake the pan or use a knife to level off the top.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the centre of the pie is set. Be careful not to over bake. Pie may be a little jiggly when it comes out of the oven but will set completely as it cools. Pies will be puffy when they come out of the oven, but will sink back down when cooled.
Cool pies on the counter, top with a squirt of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
Of course, we must wash these sweets treats down with a nice cup of tea! If you have any Halloween inspired tea recipes, why not send them to us at email@example.com or share on our Facebook page – we would love to see your ideas!
Afternoon tea is considered a great British tradition but where did it begin? Considering tea has been part of the English landscape since the 1600’s; afternoon tea is relatively young as a British tradition. The ceremony of afternoon tea was introduced in England by Anna, the Duchess of Bedford, in the 1830’s. Due to the fashion of eating an evening meal later in the day at around 8pm, the Duchess would become peckish in the afternoon and request a tray of tea, sandwiches and cake during the late afternoon. Once part of her daily routine she began inviting friends to join her and the fashion to enjoy afternoon tea between 4pm-5pm was born.
Traditional afternoon tea includes a selection of dainty sandwiches (thinly sliced cucumber sandwiches included of course), scones served with clotted cream and jam and delicate cakes and pastries. Tea was poured from silver tea pots into delicate bone china cups and tea chosen from India or Ceylon.
It was generally considered a pastime of upper-class and society women and they would dress up for the occasion into gowns, gloves and hats for their afternoon tea. Enjoying a chance to show-off their houses and gossip over the latest society news.
Soon the tradition left the home and was adopted by some of the top society hotels like The Ritz, Claridges and The Savoy. By the height of its fashion in 1920’s many tea rooms were opening around the country and music was included in the occasion. Society’s fashionable young things attended afternoon ‘tea dances’ in stylish hotels, a practice which continued until the Second World War.
Richmond Kettle Company Kettles began production around the same time as the emergence of high-societies trend to enjoy afternoon tea in 1903 and the elegant copper and silver kettles still to this day offer a chance to take a moment, invite friends around for a gossip and enjoy afternoon tea in true British style.