Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Afternoon Tea at Home: Book Review

I was so pleased to bake a cake this week out of a new cookbook! Several of you noticed the cake in yesterday's tea post.  The book was Afternoon Tea at Home by Will Torrent.  The cake I picked was the Coffee, walnut and cardamom cake. The coffee and walnut cake is a popular cake to the British tea drinker so it sounded like a perfect cake for my Valentine tea. 

Afternoon Tea at Home by Will Torrent
Ryland Peters & Small, $24.95;
Photo credit: Photography by Matt Russell

Let's start with the book, it is a very classic afternoon tea recipe book with the most gorgeous photography.  The book is divided into seasons so you can plan menus and take advantage of the food at its freshest.  There is even a few pages of menu suggestions in the back of the book for special occasion teas; such as, birthday parties, anniversaries and the like.  I really enjoyed how the recipes were classics with a twist. 

Coffee, walnut and cardamom cake
From: Afternoon Tea at Home by Will Torrent
Photo credit: Photography by Matt Russell

For instance, the cake I baked is a much-loved coffee and walnut cake that Mr. Torrent added cardamom to. The cardamom is a perfect pairing with the coffee. It added an exotic flavor that my family really enjoyed as they taste tested this recipe.  

Raspberry and rose party hearts
From: Afternoon Tea at Home by Will Torrent
Photo credit: Photography by Matt Russell

I had to highlight this recipe for Valentine's Day. The cookies are just beautiful. Wouldn't they be pretty for Mother's Day or a bridal shower.

Mince pie brownies
From: Afternoon Tea at Home by Will Torrent
Photo credit: Photography by Matt Russell

The book begins with a narrative about afternoon tea and has recipes for the 'essentials,' which includes, jams, jellies, and spreads such as lemon curd.  The recipes included classic British sandwiches for tea, scones, the Victoria sponge cake, tarts, tea cakes, trifles, and mini pies.  There are recipes to indulge the most sophisticated tea or a simpler cottage tea.  Mr. Torrent gives you all the recipes you need to entertain and create a perfect afternoon tea for every occasion.

I have never made this icing before.  I had originally decided to make the sides of the cake in the 'rustic' style that is so popular here in the states.  This icing is different in texture from the standard buttercream and I really think the cake would have been perfect iced just like in the book.  (pictured above)  
I had no trouble following the recipe. The cake baked up exactly as described and decorated beautifully!
With sweet and savory mouth-watering recipes this is a sure recipe book to add to your favorite tea enthusiasts collection. I highly recommend it for any tea lover.  It is as beautiful to look at as it is fun to cook from.

The cake was a winner and it didn't last long at my house! Everyone really enjoyed the flavor and texture.  The walnut praline topping was a favorite attribute of the cake.



Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farm
Homemaking Linkup at Hope In Every Season 
Tickle My Taste Buds Tuesdays at Lori's Culinary Creations
Weekend Retreat Linky Party at AKA Design and Life
Foodie Friends Friday at Walking on Sunshine
Rooted in Thyme Simple and Sweet Fridays
Share Your Cup Thursday at Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olsen  
Sunday's Down Under at Natasha in Oz   
What to Do Weekends at Shoestring Elegance
Idea Box Thursday at Mila's Little Things
Five Star Frugal at A Tray of Bliss


June said...

Oh---this cake sounds heavenly Sherry! I'm so glad you shared the recipe. I think I can almost smell it baking. The cookbook looks like a good one too.

Sarah said...

Yum! The cake does look delicious. Wishing for a slice right now!
Thanks for sharing the review. Looks like a great book.

Sandi@ Rose Chintz Cottage said...

Yum! That cake looks wonderful, Sherry!

The French Hutch said...

Oh my goodness, that cake! I would love a slice with my coffee this afternoon. Great book, gorgeous pics. Thanks for sharing. Think I will be making a cake soon……..

Poppy @ With a Dash of Color said...

That cake looks absolutely divine! Thanks for the recipe~ hugs, Poppy

Jann Olson said...

Sherry, that cake looks delicious! Especially the frosting, like you said. Sounds like a fabulous cookbook! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

Two PlusCute said...

The coffee cake looks heavenly.
And I really like how you compose your close ups.

Pat Cantwell said...

Thank you for sharing this amazing Afternoon tea at home book with us!
My "Mr. Ed" is a chocoholic and he loves praline, as well!
I made need to make that cake for his next Birthday!
Happy Valentine's Day!

Art and Sand said...

Oh, my goodness! Each recipe looks better than the one before.

Thanks for Sharing Your Cup!


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