Deviled Eggs, Carrot Cake, Perfect Tea

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An April Spring represents the awakening from a dormant winter with a blossoming rebirth.  This April 2022, two important religious holidays will be observed, the Jewish Passover celebrating the passage from oppression to freedom and the Christian Easter celebrating the resurrection of Christ from crucifixion.

The Ukrainian people have shown the world their bravery as they too now escape to freedom and rise up to build anew.  Let not anyone be a stranger in a strange land.  Use a tea party to welcome or help those who are now so in need of a warn hand in friendship.  Whether it is organizing an afternoon tea fundraiser for the relief to help the influx of the newest refuges or delivering a few treats to the volunteers, a small act of kindness can make a big difference.   For those who wish to make the perfect cup of tea, hot or iced, at home keep reading to learn my how to’s.  Enjoy a twist of the usual fare with a few recipes to get your started.

 Ellen Easton’s Deviled Eggs

6 Eggs ~ large or extra large; 1 to 2 Tablespoons of Mayonnaise {or nonfat plain Greek yogurt} and 1 Teaspoon of Dijon Mustard; 1/2 teaspoon of white vinegar; Salt and pepper-to taste; Dill weed and paprika – to taste; Optional ~ Fresh Parsley, finely chopped.

Place eggs in a saucepan, cover with water one inch above the eggs. Bring water to a boil. Turn off fire.  Allow the eggs to sit in water for 20 minutes.  Remove the eggs from a pan into a bowl of ice water.  Remove one egg at a time and roll on a hard surface to crack the shell. Hold each egg under cold running water and remove the shell.

Cut each egg in half and remove the yokes to a bowl. Add salt and pepper, and dill weed if desired.  Mash with a folk, adding the mayonnaise, Dijon and
white vinegar. With a fork, mash all together to a creamy consistency. Fill the cavity of the egg whites with the mixture and sprinkle with paprika. Place on a plate or tray covered in plastic wrap in the refrigerator until ready to serve. When ready to serve garnish with parsley. Serves: 12

Note~ The deviled egg recipe may be a base to add in many other ingredients to taste, including but not limited to diced olives, caviar, ground almonds and herbs.

The cavity of the egg white may be filled with hummus, guacamole, pimento cheese, deviled ham, tuna or shrimp salad and chicken salad.

 

Marbleized Hard Boiled Eggs

  

INGREDIENTS: 12 jumbo eggs; 1 1/2 tablespoons of black tea leaves; 8 cups of water; 1 1/2 teaspoons salt.

Optional:  food coloring 4-5 drops; see notes below.

PREPARATION: Place eggs in a single layer into a large pan covered with water one inch above the eggs.  Bring water to a slow boil. Boil for 10 to 12 minutes.  Sometimes the pot will start to lose water and the tops of the eggs will be exposed. It’s ok to add a little more water.  Make sure to turn the eggs around so that all sides get exposed to the tea.

When the eggs are cooked, gently lift the eggs out of the pan and place them under cold running water for approximately 2 minutes or into a bowl of iced water and are easily handled; set aside.

When the hard-boiled eggs are cold, gently crack the eggshells all over by rolling them on a paper towel or using the back of a spoon the tap the shells of each egg.  NOTE: Take care to keep the eggshells intact and not break them or let the shells detach from the eggs.  The more you crack, the more intricate the design of the marble will be.  Make the cracks fairly deep, as that is how the tea mixture will seep into the egg.

In a large pan, add black tea leaves, water, and salt.  Carefully place the cooked eggs, one by one in a single layer, back into the pan.  NOTE:  If needed, add additional water to cover them.

Bring water slowly to just a simmer. Cover the pan, lower heat, and allow the eggs to simmer for 1 hour. Check to be certain the water remains in the pan.  Add more water if needed.

After 1 hour, remove the pan (with the eggs) from heat and let the eggs cool in the liquid (the longer you leave them in the infused water, the more colored they become).

When cool, drain off the water and wrap the eggs (with the shells still on) in plastic wrap or a sealed plastic bag.  Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.

When ready to serve, remove the shells from the eggs.  Eggs will now have a marbleized appearance.

Serving suggestions: Serve sliced, halved or quartered.  Slice the eggs in half; remove yolk and use as cups for deviled eggs, chicken, tuna, seafood, and chopped salads or additional fillings.  Be creative!

Optional Notes: Create colorful marbled eggs by adding one of the following ingredients to the water: 1 TBS. soy sauce; 4 TBS. beet juice; 3 TBS orange juice; 3 TBS brewed coffee; 4 to 5 drops food coloring of your choice

Classic Carrot Cake

 Ingredients Carrot Cake:

3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar; ¼- cup superfine sugar;

1- cup vegetable oil; 3 large eggs; 1 TBS. pure vanilla extract, Nielsen Massey Madagascar Bourbon if available; 1 level TBS Nonfat, plain Greek yogurt; Zest from 1 orange, finely grated; 1 tsp. ground cinnamon; 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger; 2 cups self-rising flour; 2 cups of carrots, grated; Optional 3/4 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped; colored sanding sugar; colored sprinkles.

Prepare and set the glaze/ icing aside until ready to frost the cake.

Ginger Sugar Glaze: 1 cup powdered sugar; 1 tsp. ground ginger, 2 TBS Milk or water. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.  To thin the glaze use more liquid.

Or

Cream Cheese Icing: 7 OZ. cream cheese, softened; 1 tsp. lemon juice; fresh-squeezed; 2/3 cup powdered sugar (confectioner’s sugar) sifted. In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese, lemon juice, and powdered sugar until smooth. Yields enough frosting for one 8-inch cake.

Classic Carrot Cake Preparations: Preheat oven to 350 F.  Prepare one (1) round 8-inch cake pan or cupcake pan with vegetable baking spray. I use PAM™ BAKING Spray.  Dust with Domino light brown granulate or white granulated sugar to coat the bottom and sides of the cake pan.

In a large mixing bowl, beat together the brown sugar, superfine sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, vanilla extract, and yogurt.  Stir in the orange zest, cinnamon, and ginger. Sifting the flour over the bowl while gently folding into the mixture.  Fold in by hand the carrots and walnuts/ pecans.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan.  Bake approximately 60 to 75 minutes.  The cake is ready to remove from the oven when a toothpick placed into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Remove from oven, let cake cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes, and then turn cake out of the cake pan onto the wire rack to cool completely.

Once the cake is cool, turn out of the pan onto a cake plate and frost with the prepared Sugar Glaze or Cream Cheese Icing and decorate with sprinkles or colored sanding sugar. Yield: 8 servings or 12 cupcakes.

 


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Text and Photos ©Ellen Easton

Author

  • Ellen Easton, author of Afternoon Tea~Tips, Terms and Traditions(RED WAGON PRESS), an afternoon tea authority, lifestyle and etiquette industry leader, keynote speaker and product spokesperson, is a hospitality, design, and retail consultant whose clients have included the Waldorf=Astoria, the Plaza and Bergdorf Goodman. Easton’s family traces their tea roots to the early 1800s, when ancestors first introduced tea plants from India and China to the Colony of Ceylon, thus building one of the largest and best cultivated teas estates on the island.

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