The Twisted Library — January 25, 2016 at 1:34 pm

Feeling Fancy? Have Afternoon Tea at Home!


“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” – C.S. Lewis

love tea. My collections of tea and mugs are extensive. One of my favorite holiday traditions with my friends is to go to a pretty and cozy local tea house. How do I create the perfect tea experience at home?  Will Torrent guides you through it in Afternoon Tea at Home: Deliciously indulgent recipes for sandwiches, savories, scones, cakes, and other fancies !

Although afternoon teas have been around since the 19th century, we owe the formal occasion we enjoy today to Queen Victoria. While we don’t necessarily keep all of its past formalities, tea parties today still include scones, savories, and delicate pastries.

Torrent starts us off with some “Afternoon tea essentials,” that is, your teatime condiments. The recipes for various jellies, jams, lemon curd, and spreads look so good; I’m really eager to try the passionfruit curd!  Looking for some traditional tea party staples? Try one of his “Classic afternoon tea” recipes like cucumber sandwiches with yuzu and chive butter or classic scones.

Also included are some delicious recipes for the perfect sandwiches suited for all kinds of tea parties. Try a beetroot cured salmon sandwich with horseradish crème fraîche on rye bread, a Bloody Mary shrimp sandwich, or a ‘Coronation’ chicken sandwich with pickled red onion (coronation chicken having been invented to celebrate the 1953 coronation of Queen Elizabeth II). And I’m practically salivating at the red wine poached pear, Stilton and endive open sandwich on walnut bread!

The desserts in Afternoon Tea at Home look to die for!  You’ve got your traditional jam tarts, lemon and polenta drizzle cakes, and fruit cake with orange glaze. But also provided are recipes for more modern desserts like mini mocha cakes or pistachio and strawberry délices. The fruit tarts, such as the strawberry & champagne tarts and the chocolate & cherry tarts, look so delicate and fancy! And the Earl Grey and lemon teapot cookies are especially cute!

What I also like about this book is that it comes with a list of many different menu planners. Types of menus include garden parties, bridal showers, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, champagne teas, and several more.  Whether you are planning a traditional tea party, a themed baby shower, or even an autumn holiday party, you are sure to find some inspiration here!


Through 80 recipes (as beautifully illustrated as they are delicious), Afternoon Tea at Home showcases Will Torrent’s masterful techniques in pâtisserie, baking, chocolate work and savory dishes. Now you too can learn to make special afternoon tea experiences!

Twisted Talk: Have you ever hosted or been to a tea party? How do you like your tea? What is your favorite teatime snack? Discuss below!

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