Down the Rabbit hole

My friend reminded me today that two years ago we were having afternoon tea at the Rabbit hole tea room in Stoke. We had a lovely meal of sandwiches, scones and cakes and tea in porcelain tea cups and saucers. We had to book a table in advance. Obviously it was closed during lock-down but I believe it is open again now. It was a charming place and suitable for families having birthday parties. I hope it does well despite the cost of living crisis.

Mince pie and tea

How kind! Hubby just brought me a cup of tea and a mince pie. I’m upstairs keeping warm because this bug has still got me. I need to get up and go and do some shopping, but I was just reading the end of a book and then suddenly there’s a plate with a pie and a brew of tea on it appearing through the door!

Anyway, I’d better drink the tea before it goes cold. Then get my act together. The shops might be closing early today. If I feel a bit better we might celebrate the new year tonight, I just hope there aren’t lots of fireworks!

Crumpets for tea

Hot buttered crumpets for tea! The little holes in the top of them allow the butter or margarine to trickle down into tiny tubes inside the crumpet. You heat them under a grill or in a toaster on both sides to heat them up. The base of them is solid so when you add your topping it doesn’t leak out. I only used to have butter, but recently I’ve added grated cheese and microwaved them for a few seconds so it drizzled inside them, also try honey or jam (America calls it jelly). Note these are NOT muffins, that’s a whole different bready food.

Crumpets

‘and shall we have crumpets for tea ?’

I don’t remember where that quote comes from. But that’s what we had for our meal this afternoon. Toasted to a slightly brown colour and hot so that the crumpet is cooked through. I usually have butter or margarine on it but today I had butter and then as a treat a small amount of Greek honey.

The porous, sponge like consistency of the crumpet makes it good for absorbing melted butter. The top of a crumpet is full of a lattice of holes, whereas the base is solid, so these lacunae stay filled and only leak slightly. Yummy! I’ve also toasted crumpets, then grated cheese on them and then I gently microwave them for a savoury snack.

This bought back a memory of using a fork pierced through a crumpet and pushed onto the front bars of a gas fire. A tricky thing to do as the fire might burn your fingers as well as the crumpet! Cook the back first then the front, then take it off the fire and butter and eat. (Childhood memories of when life was more basic).

Dunked biscuits taste better

It has been proven that biscuits taste more biscuity when they are dunked in your favourite hot beverage, tea, coffee, cocoa, (maybe not bovril or that kind of drink!) apparently it releases more biscuit aromas. I think it makes them easier to eat too!

Some biscuits like ginger nuts don’t soften as much as ones like rich tea biscuits. The worst thing that can happen is that the biscuit/ cookie falls apart and bits fall into your drink. You can either fish the bits out with a spoon or wait till you have finished drinking and then scoop it out. Have a go if you haven’t dunked before… Enjoy!

I’m bored

Fed up with being ill. Not Covid, but a cold/ chest infection. But I’m getting bored. I feel trapped but that might be a good thing. Perhaps I’m getting better?

Sundays used to be boring when I was a child. Nowhere was open, shops shut, nothing really to visit. If you ran out of milk you could not buy any. Memory of a different world. Time changes things. Then I was waiting for fruit salad with evaporated milk with bread and butter for tea. Watching my mom and dad doing the washing in a boiler in the kitchen that had a mangle on the top and an old spin dryer to get most of the water out. While they did that we played in the garden. Unless the weather was bad. Then I would read a book, or draw. Maybe it wasn’t all that boring?

Tea at the Rabbit Hole Tearoom.

A good memory from a few years ago. Having tea with friends at the Rabbit Hole Tearoom in Stoke, Stoke-on-Trent.

We had been looking for somewhere different to visit and we had a friend coming down from Yorkshire. I had to book in advance but it was worth it. My memory is of a themed Tearoom around the Alice in Wonderland stories, with the white rabbit, mad hatter, dormouse and Queen of Hearts. The tea was lovely, cakes, scones, sandwiches, fruit. A pot of tea each.

It was a family themed Tearoom and it was very full. No social distancing in those pre covid days. I wish I could go back in time. Remembering those days is getting harder. But seeing old photos like this help to reassure me that things might one day be better. One day. When we can I hope this Tearoom will still be open.