Stay for Tea

Month: March, 2009


Ms. Verhext has created a lovely community on Flickr, a pool of photos beckoning with magic and warmth, marzipan, wind chimes, moss covered stones and hidden corners. I’ve already dumped, indiscriminately, a lot of photos in there. You should too!

Magic is as magic does

Individual photo credits:

1. The Leaving Lot, no. 1, 2. flowers at the wharf, 3. catch it if you can, 4. Monday – Waikiki Aquarium, 5. Johnny, jump up and kiss me, 6. schattenspiele, 7. leaf, 8. IMG_9071.JPG, 9. dinner

Black sesame seed flour-less peanut butter cookies

(From reader recipe posted on )

* 1 cup creamy peanut butter (not natural)
* 3/4 cup sugar
* 1 large egg
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 5 tablespoons black sesame seeds

1. Preheat oven to 350°F with racks in upper and lower thirds.
2. Beat together peanut butter and sugar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until combined well, about 2 minutes. Beat in egg and baking soda until combined well. (I don’t own an electric mix, so I mix everything by hand. This one is easy and only takes a couple of minutes.)
3. Place sesame seeds in a shallow bowl. Roll level teaspoons of dough into balls, then roll in seeds to coat. Arrange balls about 1 inch apart on 2 ungreased baking sheets. (Don’t pour out all sesame seeds onto the plate at once. Do it a little at a time, adding seeds as you roll more cookies).

4. Bake cookies, switching position of sheets halfway through, until puffed and cracked, about 10 minutes. Cool on baking sheets 2 minutes, then transfer to racks to cool. (Cookies come out very very soft and crumbly, so transfer them to the cooling rack with a spatula. They will solidify within minutes)
Cookies keep in an airtight container at room temperature 5 days.

Birthday rosewater sugar cookies

A couple of weeks ago, a little firecracker of a girl I’m friends with celebrated her 6th birthday.

Birthday girl makes a wish

The spread!

My friend Jenny E.’s delicious home made scones & lemon curd.

For her lavish birthday spread, hosted by her mom and our friend Sarah, I baked rosewater sugar cookies, based on this recipe.

1 c. sugar
1/2 c. butter
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 tsp. lemon extract (Lacking lemon extract, I substituted with 3 teaspoons of fresh lemon zest – 1/2 tsp. of lemon extract roughly equals 1 tsp. of lemon zest. I also added a couple of teaspoons of water, to make sure that the liquid stays the same for the recipe).
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. sour cream
1 1/2 tsp. rose water
1/8 tsp. salt
3 c. flour

Cream sugar and softened butter until smooth. Beat in yolk and flavorings. Combine baking soda and sour cream and stir into sugar mixture. Stir in rose water. Sift salt and flour; mix with batter. Roll out on floured surface and cut with cookie cutter. Bake on greased sheets in preheated 325 degree oven for about 15 to 20 minutes.

For the frosting, I used a simple, quick icing recipe.

2 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
1/5 cup milk (really, just check for consistence, not too thick, but not too runny)
1 tsp. of vanilla extract
1 tsp. of rosewater
dash of salt

Once the cookies had cooled sufficiently, I used a butter knife to spread the icing on the cookies, then topped them off with some rainbow sprinkles I had in the cupboard.