25 June 2010

Low Tea vs High Tea

What is the quintessential quaintrelle activity?
A tea party would most definitely make the list. Today a tea ceremony with all its pomp and protocol has become much to impractical for the daily hustle, yet for the quaintrelle it is a luxury she must afford herself even if mean just once in a long while.

In the days of yore, the difference between and high and low tea were common knowledge, as time progressed and tea time passed into a state of uncommon occurrence, the details have fallen to novelty knowledge much like knowledge of the language of the flowers and hand fans. Today many confuse high tea with low tea, a grave mistake for an elegant quaintrelle to make.

So what are the difference? I have researched the subject and found.

High Tea also known as Meat Tea is more like a dinner. Tea is served alongside other "heavy" dishes like cold meats, fish, beef etc , etc. High Tea is usually traditional among the working classes and set after nightfall.

Afternoon Tea, which is often confused as High Tea but is really Low Tea, is the stereotypical tea party. Tea is served alongside pastries, scones and finger foods (i.e. cucumber sandwiches). Usually held in the afternoon, there are three styles of Low Tea
  • Cream Tea: tea served with scones, jam and cream
  • Light Tea: tea served with scones and sweets
  • Full Tea : tea served with scones, sweets, savories and dessert

I hosted an Afternoon Tea a while back and tried as best I could to pull off a full tea but end up making a light tea instead.

I served Castille Rose Tea, with plain scones (I didn't add the currents and 1/2 the amount of baking powder), clotted cream, cucumber sandwiches and clotted cream blackberry kiwi concoction (invented on the spot, layer clotted cream kiwis and blackberries on top of each other).

I am going to hold another Afternoon Tea in July and will try again for a full tea...I need more recipes for savories.

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