Thursday, December 3, 2009

Pencil Box Club Christmas Tea

Eight members of the Pencil Box Club spent a great day at Kathleen Z.'s enjoying a traditional English tea created by our hostess.

Kathleen Z. puts the finishing touches on a tea tray of finger sandwiches, scones, and desserts.

Here is Kathleen's recipe for the Oreo cheesecakes shown on the top tier of the tea tray.

Oreo Mini-cheesecakes
12 oreo cookies
2-8 oz pkgs. softened cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
2 tsps shortening
  • Split cookies, keeping filling on one cookie. Line muffin pans with foil bake cups.  Place filling covered cookie in bake cups, filling side up. Set aside.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla till well mixed. Spoon cream cheese mixture into bake cups.
  • Crush remaining cookies and sprinkle over cream cheese mixture. Bake, uncovered, in 325 degrees oven for about 25 minutes or until set. Cool.
  • In a small saucepan, melt choolate pieces with shortening over low heat, stirring frequently. Drizzle over baked cheesecakes. Cover and chilll. Makes 12 single serving cheesecakes.

Mary Lee W. serves steamed chocolate almond pudding

Steamed Chocolate Almond Pudding
3/4 C butter
2-1/4 tsp baking soda
1-1/2 C sugar 
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
5 eggs  
1 tsp salt
3 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa, Dutch preferred, e.g.Droste
1-1/2 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tsps vanilla
1 cup dark raisins soaked in 1/2-cup dark rum
  • Set out a stock pot with rack and lid.  Add 6-8 inches of water and set over low heat.
  • Generously oil a 2 1/2-3 quart steamed pudding mold (also the top).  Set aside.
  • In a mixer bowl cream butter and sugar until light. Blend in eggs one at a time.
  • Combine flour, almonds, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cocoa. Mix into batter alternatively with cream and vanilla.
  • Stir in raisins and rum
  • Spoon into prepared mold and cover. Place on rack in pot and bring water to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and steam 1-1 1/2 hours. May take up to 2 hours but take care it doesn't become too dry. Check pan after 1 hour and add water if necessary.
  • Remove pudding from pot and let stand five minutes or so, then run a knife around edge and unmold onto a serving dish. Best when served warm. Pour sauce (below) over pudding like a glaze.
Dark Chocolate Sauce
3/4 cup sugar 
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup cocoa
pinch of salt
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla
  • In a small saucepan combine sugar and water.
  • Blend in the evaporated milk.
  • Add butter and salt.
  • Cook over medium heat until mixture boils and sugar dissolves.  (Stir constantly).
  • Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
  • Transfer to a serving dish or store in a jar in refrigerator and reheat before using.
And some of our club members discussed holiday libations while sipping tea.

Betty L.'s lemonade
12 oz. can frozen lemonade
12 oz. half-and-half cream
12 oz. vodka (or to taste)
Whip in blender until frothy. Serve.

Kathy T.'s bourbon cup
64 oz. pineapple juice
12 oz. can frozen lemonade
12 oz. can frozen limeade
12 oz. bourbon (or to taste)
Mix in 2 one-gallon zippered freezer bags until slushy. Remove from freezer one hour before serving and manipulate bag to mix ingredients. Serve.

Kathy T. and Sally S. wear felt corsages presented to all the guests.