Sunday, July 27, 2008

A Very Nearly Tea

One of the things I love about The Pooh Cook Book is the variations -- several recipes will be done two or more ways, to suit particular (or even picky) kids' tastes. Case in point, a warm and soothing beverage, kid-friendly because there's not a speck of caffeine:
A Very Nearly Tea

One 4-cup earthenware teapot

5-6 carrot tops, feathery leaves
Orange honey
Honey with a few drops of orange juice
Honey and a small piece of fresh or dried orange peel

5-6 sprigs of parsley
Lemon honey
Honey and a slice of lemon
Honey and a piece of lemon peel

Fill a 4-cup earthenware teapot with hot water and set it on an asbestos pad to warm.

Fill the tea kettle with cold water and bring to a boil.

Wash the carrot tops or parsley.

When the teapot is warm, spill out the water and fill the teapot with carrot tops or parsley. Twist them so that they are thickest at the bottom of the teapot.

Pour boiling water onto the carrot tops or parsley and fill the teapot.

Let it steep for at least 20 minutes.

For carrot-top tea, put orange honey in a teacup before pouring in the carrot-top tea.

For parsley tea, put lemon honey in the teacup.

Serve with lightly buttered curls of Fairy Toast.

Christopher Robin was at home by this time ... and he was so glad to see them that they stayed there until very nearly tea-time, and then they had a Very Nearly tea, which is one you forget about afterwards ...
-- The House at Pooh Corner

It just sounds... homey. I like thinking of this tea, though, especially for young gardeners. I never used my carrot tops for anything -- the Lawrie family let me plant a row or two of vegetables. The only tops I was fond of were beet tops -- loved the greens, hated the roots. Ah, youth.

Fairy Toast is the recipe on the next page, and basically involves shaving thin parings of bread off a stale loaf and toasting them in the oven on a baking sheet until brown and lovely.

The mention of an asbestos pad tickles me -- I can't imagine recommending someone use asbestos, and doubt that the asbestos content was actually necessary here. So, let's recommend an equipment switch here, and use a trivet, or a hot pad, or something protective.

1 comment:

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