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Steve Titman of Summer Lodge shares his afternoon tea recipes

PUBLISHED: 12:09 25 June 2014 | UPDATED: 12:11 25 June 2014

A classic English Afternoon Tea at Summer Lodge

A classic English Afternoon Tea at Summer Lodge

Katharine Davies

Steve Titman, Executive Chef at Summer Lodge, shares his classic English afternoon tea recipes as well as some new ones including feather-light macaroons and a creamy pannacotta

Strawberry Tartlets

When English strawberries are in season they are a must for any afternoon tea. For these bite-size tartlets you can also use other summer berries such as raspberries or blueberries.

For the sweet paste (pastry)

225g flour

66g butter

75g sugar

3g salt

1 egg

1 egg yolk

Method

Mix the dry ingredients and butter together until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg and mix to a dough. Leave the pastry to rest for at least 1 hour, then roll out and line the tartlet cases and bake blind at 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 for 15 minutes or until cooked and crisp all the way through. Now make the crème pâtissière

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For the crème pâtissière

250ml milk

1/4 vanilla pod

50g egg yolk

37g sugar

20g custard powder

Fresh strawberries to decorate

Method

Bring the milk and vanilla to a boil. In a jug mix the egg yolk and sugar together, then add the custard powder to form a paste, then add a splash of the hot milk, then pour the custard mixture into the pan and slowly bring back to the boil stirring continuously until the mixture thickens. Set aside to cool. To assemble the tarts fill the cases with the crème pâtissière, then decorate with pieces of English strawberry which have been washed, hulled and cut into halves or quarters. Dust with icing sugar if you wish before serving.

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Vanilla Pannacotta with Passion Fruit Jelly

This is a something a little unusual to add to the classic afternoon tea, but its light and refreshing and looks very pretty served in elegant little glasses.

For the pannacotta

112ml cream

37ml milk

13g sugar

1/4 vanilla pod

1/2 gelatine leaf

For the jelly

8 passion fruit (juiced)

40g sugar

1 gelatine leaf

Method

First make the pannacotta. Soak the gelatine in cold water. Bring the milk, cream, sugar and vanilla to a boil. Remove from the heat and dissolve the gelatine into the cream mixture then pour into glasses and leave to set. Next make the jelly. Put the passion fruit juice and sugar into a saucepan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved. Meanwhile soak the gelatine leaf in cold water until softened, then stir into the juice mixture until dissolved. When the pannacotta is completely set and the jelly is cool, pour on top of the pannacotta.

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Fruit Scones

No English afternoon tea would be complete without freshly baked scones, slathered in Dorset clotted cream and homemade jam, they’re hard to beat. We like to serve fruit scones at Summer Lodge but if you prefer leave the fruit out. The secret to a light scone is not to over work the dough.

Ingredients

300g flour

60g sugar

10g baking powder

3g salt

90g butter

60g sultanas

60g currants

165ml whipping cream plus a little extra to glaze

1 egg

Method

Preheat oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas Mark 7. Whisk together the cream and egg. In another large bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt. With a pastry blender or by hand run the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse meal, with a few pea-size pieces of butter remaining. Stir in currants and sultanas. Mix in the cream mixture until just combined. (The dough should be crumbly; do not overwork.). Transfer dough to a lightly floured work surface and pat into a 6-inch circle. Cut into 10 scones and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush tops with 1 tablespoon cream. Bake until golden, 16 to 18 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through. Best eaten on the day they are baked.

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Meringue Kisses

The key to a great afternoon tea is to keep everything light and bite-sized. These meringue kisses are easy to make and are feather light. Use a good quality chocolate to sandwich the halves together.

Ingredients

100g egg whites

100g sugar

100g icing sugar

100g chocolate (melted)

Method

Whisk the egg whites until stiff, then gradually add the sugar. Fold in the icing sugar and place the mixture in a piping bag with star nozzle. Pipe the ‘kisses’ onto greaseproof paper and bake at 80°C/176°F/Gas Mark 1/4 for 2 1/2 hours or until crisp. When the meringues have cooled use the melted chocolate to stick the kisses together in pairs.

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Macaroons

In recent years the colourful macaroon has become very trendy. They are easy to make and will add a dash of French style to the tea table.

Ingredients

100g ground almonds

100g icing sugar

75g egg white

38ml water

100g sugar

Food colouring

Sugar thermometer

Method

Preheat the oven to at 130°C/250°F or 1/2 Gas Mark and line a large baking tray. Mix the ground almonds, icing sugar and half the egg whites together by hand. Slowly whisk the remaining egg whites to stiff peaks. Meanwhile heat the sugar and water in a small pan, when it reaches to 121°C on the sugar thermometer (the mixture should be thick and syrupy) carefully pour into the stiff egg whites while whisking slowly. Add a drop of food colouring of your choice. Fold the meringue mixture into the almond mixture and continue to mix by hand for a further 10 minutes until it is well combines and slightly runny. Pipe onto the baking tray and leave to rest for 10 minutes, then cook for 16 minutes. Turn off the oven and leave for a further 16 minutes. When cool sandwich the macaroons together with whipped cream.

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Sandwich fillings

Traditional afternoon tea sandwich fillings include smoked salmon, ham and mustard, egg mayonnaise and classic cucumber. But why not try some more locally inspired fillings such as a local goats cheese or Dorset Blue Vinny?

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Afternoon Tea at Summer Lodge

Why not spoil yourself with a delicious afternoon tea at Summer Lodge in Evershot? Their Traditional Afternoon Tea (£25.50) features finger sandwiches, freshly made pastries or cakes and homemade scones with strawberry jam and Dorset clotted cream. They also serve a very fine Dorset Cream Tea (£14.00). Teas are available Monday - Saturday 12:30pm - 5:30pm; Sunday 4pm - 5:30pm Booking in advance is recommended, call 01935 482000. For more details visit summerlodgehotel.co.uk.

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