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What is Bubble Tea?

The other day at a fall apple festival near my hometown in PA I saw a huge sign that read “Bubble Tea $6.99”. I have never heard of such a thing so I came home and researched exactly what it was because I love trying new things. I soon found out that bubble tea, also known as tapioca tea or milk tea, originates in Taiwan where you can find bubble tea stands on every corner. The “bubbles” come from the froth that the milk makes when the drink is shaken prior to drinking. The pearls in the bottom of the glass are tapioca pearls that are typically black in color but can also be white or clear. They are soaked in a simple syrup before using so that they add sweetness to the drink. After the pearls are placed in the glass, it is then filled with a chilled drink then shaken.

Now for a recipe! If you like Chai Tea, you have to try this awesome bubble tea recipe. It is delicious! However, if you prefer other flavors of tea, feel free to sub them in!

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What You’ll Need:

5 Chai Tea Bags (we recommend Tazo Organic Chai Tea)

Coconut Milk (or whole milk if you prefer)

Honey

Tapioca Pearls (you can find these on Amazon)

Simple Syrup (optional)

 

Put it together!

  1. Boil the tapioca pearls for 15 minutes. Turn the heat off and let them cool in the water for 6 minutes.
  2. Rinse the pearls, place in a container with simple syrup or water and chill. (If you like a sweeter drink use the simple syrup so the pearls absorb the sweetness)
  3. Brew your chai tea by steeping 5 chai tea bags in 3 cups of water.
  4. Grab a tall glass, put 1/2 cup of coconut milk in the glass, add honey to taste.
  5. Add a few spoonfuls of tapioca pearls.
  6. Put 3/4 cup of your tea in the glass and mix it up!
  7. Grab a straw and enjoy!

 

-Alexis

 

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white-chocolate-matcha-brownies

 

I hope the green coloring doesn’t throw you off because these brownies are delicious! The light and airy texture is almost like a cake. This is the perfect quick dessert for anyone who loves matcha tea.

Matcha has so many benefits to the body! It helps fight heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and some even believe is slows the effects of Alzheimer’s disease. And for those of us entering the colder months and cold season, Matcha is great to boost your immune system.

 

LET’S BAKE!

 

Step 1: Choose your Matcha Tea! We have plenty of options at ETS. Such as peppermint matcha, bengal club chai, kenya white rhino and japanese izu.

Bengal Club Chai Matcha Loose Leaf Tea

Step 2: Get your ingredients ready. You will need:

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons of milk
  • 70 g all-purpose flour
  • 100 g white chocolate chips
  • 120 g melted white chocolate
  • 30 g Matcha Tea Powder
  • 70 g unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 60 g sugar

 

Step 3: Get your oven ready. Preheat at 350 degrees F.

Step 4: Line an 8×8 baking pan with parchment paper.

Step 5: Whisk together the flour and matcha powder.

Step 6: Beat the butter and sugar together until light then add eggs one at a time

Step 7: Stir in melted white chocolate and milk until mixed fully

Step 8: Stir in matcha mixture and half of the white chocolate chips

Step 9: Pour into pan and bake for 10 minutes.

Step 10: Remove from oven and sprinkle rest of chips on top

Step 11: Bake another 7 minutes!

Step 12: Let cool & ENJOY!

 

We hope you enjoy this recipe that we uncovered from epicmatcha.com! I tried it out even though I was skeptical and found it to be the PERFECT after dinner dessert without being too heavy. Plus I don’t feel guilty from the all the wonderful benefits from matcha.

 

-Alexis

 

 

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(c) English Tea Store – Crystal Derma

There is a huge difference when it comes to baking in the United States versus the rest of the world and that is weight versus volume. Americans measure using the US Standard while everyone else measures using weight. If you have tried to make a recipe straight from a British or European cookbook or baking mixes, you will notice that their recipes are laid out in grams (g) and fluid ounces (oz). In American recipes and baking mixes, it’s completely different. Everything is measured out in cups, both wet and dry. Teaspoons and tablespoons are used in both measuring systems but they are actually completely different when it comes to the actual measurement of the teaspoon or tablespoon.

The British measure their baking ingredients by using a kitchen scale. Many years ago, kitchen scales were standard and had to be manually calibrated. In recent years, people have been converting to digital kitchen scales because they are much easier to work with than standard. The only downside to owning a digital kitchen scale is that the batteries will occasionally run low or die and so you will have to replace the batteries every now and then. The perks of owning a kitchen scale are much better, as you can use one bowl to measure everything instead of having to use cup after cup like we do here in America. It saves a lot of mess.

It also very important to weigh EACH ingredient as you work with a kitchen scale since every ingredient is different. If you were to weigh about 200 grams of all purpose (also known as plain) flour and then need caster sugar afterwards, do not assume that they are the same amount. Every ingredient weighs differently. Get the scale and weigh the caster sugar. It may take a little more or a little less. For the US measures, weight is no difference. Amounts are exactly how they are measured. For one US cup (dry) to be measured, it is best to level off the excess with a butter knife for exact measurements.

Along with measuring ingredients, there is also a different way to measuring temperatures. If you are reading a British recipe and it says to heat the oven to, let’s say, Gas Mark 4, it may baffle you if you are unfamiliar with using a certain type of British oven. Gas marks are how to heat up gas ovens in the UK. Other stoves are marked with temperatures in Celsius, which are also known as Centigrade. Ovens in the US use Fahrenheit, so always look for the C or the F when looking at temperatures. American gas ovens do not have gas marks and can be preheated to Fahrenheit (some ovens may even have Celsius on the knobs), even if the stove is electric.

While it is good to use the American measurements, it’s even better to know how to measure the British way. It may seem hard at first but it really is easy to master once you get it working! Plus, you won’t need to convert any recipes!

-CD

 

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(c) Julia Briggs

Who likes anything with lemon in it?  Most of you I am guessing.  Even my hubby likes these biscuits and he does not like lemon!

The recipe for these biscuits is very old and I can no longer read the name but I know it was from an old Italian lady and began with B.

 

If anybody knows these biscuits then please let me know.

You will need:

  • 2 greased baking sheets
  • Oven 180 C  350 F  Gas Mark 4
  • 8 oz flour
  • 4 oz sugar
  • 4 oz butter
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
  • Zest and some juice of half a lemon
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(c) Julia Briggs

Sift the flour into a bowl and add the sugar.  Cube the butter and rub it into the flour and sugar until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.  Whisk the egg yolks,then add the  vanilla essence, lemon zest and a small amount of lemon juice and add to the dry ingredients.  Mix well until the dough comes together.  Shape the dough into a sausage and wrap in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  Then remove the dough and divide into approximately 12 pieces, use your hand to shape the biscuits into either rounds, circles or S shapes.

Place on the greased baking sheets and bake for about 10-15 minutes until the biscuits are pale golden and firm to the touch.  Allow to cool on a wire rack.  If you like you can make some icing with icing sugar and the rest of the lemon juice for some of the biscuits.  They do go down well with a nice cup of tea.

-JAB

IMG_5859Savoy Biscuits or Lady Finger cakes can be eaten alone – with a cup of tea – or used as the sponge in a trifle.  Remember we made a trifle with trifle sponges broken into pieces well you can use these if you like instead.  There are softer and soak up the alcohol better or you can just eat them as a little cake.  Either way they are quick to make and tasty.  The recipe is a fatless sponge one.

You will need:

  • Two baking sheets lined with parchment.  Set the oven at 190 C  Gas Mark 5  375 F
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 oz caster sugar
  • Vanilla Extract
  • 3 oz Plain Flour
  • A little icing sugar for dusting

You can use a piping bag with the end cut off and a plain nozzle in or you can just make them round by dropping a teaspoonful of the mixture onto the baking sheets.

We are using plain flour so we need to get as much air into the mixture as we can so start by separating the eggs and put the yolks and half the sugar in a mixer IMG_5852and beat well.  Whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks and then gradually and carefully add the remaining sugar.  Now put everything together and fold in the sieved flour.  Taking care not to knock the air out.  Put the mixture into a piping bag and pipe fingers onto your baking sheets.  Cook for only 15 minutes until firm to the touch and a nice colour, not too pale and not too brown.  Dust with the icing sugar and then place on a wire rack to cool completely.  They can be frozen for later use or stored in an airtight tin for a dew days.

Enjoy fresh from the oven with a cup of tea from our new English Tea Store sampler packs!

–JAB

 

IMG_5343Remember all those recipes we did using egg whites?  Well now is the time to use some egg yolks.  Custard tarts are easy to make and very tasty so here goes.

 

 

 

You will need:

  • 4 oz sweet short crust pastry,
  • made with 4 oz flour, 2oz butter and 2 oz sugar.  Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs and stir in the sugar.  Add enough cold water to combine the ingredients together and leave the bowl clean.
  • 2 eggs and one egg yolk
  • 1/2 pint milk
  • 2 tablespoons sugar

Or buy some ready made pastry!  Roll out the pastry to fit inside a 7 inch flan tin and blind bake for 10 minutIMG_5344es at 190 C 375 F Gas 5 .  Remove from the oven and then reduce the heat to 180 C 350 F Gas mark 4.

Prepare the custard filling by heating the milk and sugar to almost boiling point then allow to cool a little before adding the whisked eggs and egg yolk.  Strain the liquid into the pastry case and, if liked, sprinkle the top with grated nutmeg.  Bake inside a roasting tin half filled with water for about 20 minutes until set.   Allow to cool before removing from the tin.  This can be served warm with cream or cold with a nice cup of tea. -JAB

IMG_5337 (2)No, not the fishy type…the cream bun type!  Oysters and a variation on Maids of Honour which we made some time ago.

It is a pastry base with an almond flavoured cake on top and a jam and cream filling.  In order to put the fresh cream in we need to bake the cakes first and then remove the cake bit and add the jam and cream.  Yes a little messy but it can look good in the end.

You will need for 18 buns: 6 oz sweet shortcrust pastry – made or bought.

Filling:

  • 3 oz butter
  • 3 oz sugar
  • 3 oz ground almonds
  • 1 egg
  • A few drops of almond essence
  • Jam and cream

Oven 190 C, 375 F Gas mark 5

Roll out the pastry until quite thin and use a cutter (3 inch) to make 18 rounds, re-rolling the pastry each time.  Line each patty hole with the pastry.  MeanwhileIMG_5338 cream together the butter and sugar and stir in the almonds, egg and essence.  place a small spoonful of the mixture into each case and bake for 20 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack and only when cool carefully remove the cake mixture using a sharp knife and fill each case with a spoonful of jam and some cream then replace the cake on top, tilting to one side.  Enjoy with a cuppa.  -JAB

IMG_5335Coffee Kisses, melting moments or chocolate shortbread kisses.  Whatever you you want to call them they are delicious.

I have made plain ones with chocolate on top and I made them rather large so they would photograph better.

 

 

You will need:

  • 6 oz Self Raising Flour
  • 3 oz Caster Sugar
  • 3 oz butter
  • 1 medium egg
  • 2 teaspoons of instant coffee dissolved in a tablespoon of hot water if you are making the coffee kisses.  Or vanilla essence.

Oven 180 C, 350 F or gas mark 4.  A greased or lined baking sheet.

Soften the butter and mix with the flour and sugar, stir in the beaten egg and either the coffee or  vanilla essence and mix well.  Divide the dough into 24  balls the size of a walnut and place on the baking sheet. Cook for about 15 minutes.  When cool sandwich them together in 12 pairs with either plain or coffee flavoured butter cream.  Melt some chocolate for the top if you have any!!

  • Butter Icing is made with:
  • 2 oz butterIMG_5334
  • 4 oz sieved icing sugar
  • Coffee flavouring

Mix everything together.

Try to sandwich them together just before serving as the butter icing tends to make the shortbread soft.

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(C) Julia Briggs- English Tea Store

We are coming to the end of the strawberry season now but you can use raspberries or in fact any fruit you want to top this delicious cheesecake.  Plus it is a no bake cheesecake so you can make it even if the weather is hot!

For the base you can either make one with a packet of digestive biscuits and some butter or you can use a ready made pie crust.  If you use a pie crust then you will need to melt about 4 oz of chocolate with about 2 oz unsalted butter and melt together before putting on the base of your pie crust.  I used

1 packet of digestive biscuits

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(c) Julia Briggs – English Tea Store

4 oz unsalted butter

Make the biscuits into a crumb, melt the butter and mix into this crumb then use to line an 8 inch springform tin, pressing it down with the back of a metal spoon.  Put the tin into the ‘fridge to chill.

Meanwhile:

Beat together 8 oz cream cheese,  1/2 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of sour cream, 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence and 1 tub of either cool whip or a packet of instant whip with 1/2 cup of double cream.  When well mixed put this mixture on top of the biscuit crumb or pie crust and chill overnight.  Just before serving. wash, hull and halve some fresh strawberries or other fruit and place over the cheese mixture.  Melt about 4 oz of chocolate and drizzle this over the fruit, serve immediately.  The cheesecake will keep in a ‘fridge for a few days but once it is seen it will disappear rather quickly I am sure.

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(c) Julia Briggs – English Tea Store

Chocolate cake always goes down well for afternoon tea and my dentist, (whom I saw on Saturday) is very partial to chocolate cake so this is a new recipe just for her.  It is a take on lemon drizzle cake but chocolate cake with a Mars bar drizzle and a chocolate butter cream filling.  I discovered that you could melt Mars bars and drizzle onto cake when I went to the cupboard and found the chocolate gone but one Mars bar left.

Oven 180 C, 350 F or gas mark 4  A greased loaf tin or a sandwich tin.

4 oz butter

4 oz caster sugar

2 large eggs

4 oz self raising flour

1 oz chocolate powder

1 tablespoon golden syrup.

1 Mars bar.

IMG_4716

(c) Julia Briggs – English Tea Store

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy then add the eggs one at a time with a little flour, fold in the remaining flour and chocolate powder and golden syrup and spoon into your tin.  Bake for 20-25 minutes for a sandwich tin and about 35-40 minutes for a loaf tin.  Always test with a cake tester or needle before taking out of the oven though because chocolate cake always looks done even when it is not.   Leave in the tin to cool slightly before transferring to a wire rack to cool.  Meanwhile make the butter cream with:

2 oz butter

4 oz icing sugar

1/2 oz chocolate powder.

Mix all the ingredients together and beat until smooth.

IMG_4721

(c) Julia Briggs – English Tea Store

Slice the cake and spread all but one tablespoon of the butter cream on the bottom half.  Prick the top half of the cake all over and place on top of the butter cream.  Melt the Mars bar in the microwave for 30 seconds and beat hard with the tablespoon of reserved butter cream.  It will be liquid still.  Pour over the cake and leave to settle.  I made some plain buns and poured it over so you can see how it trickles down into the cake itself.​

Once everything has cooled down the top of the cake looks sticky but not actually covered in a chocolate icing so you can, if you want, cover the top with icing or leave it as it is.  I left mine and it was voted a hit by the dentist!

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