I was in London again. The city that seems more and more like the ‘Neverland’. A soap bubble that one day will burst and be gone.
But before it goes , and as long as the ravens are on Tower Hill it won’t, I must share my love of Teatime.
What is teatime to less fortunate mortals who didn’t grow up with the smell of Toasted Teacakes in their nostrils?
Afternoon teatime is a ritual that takes place between threethirty and five and where every thing evolves around a pot with a spout a handle and lid. Tastes vary but to me the pot has to be made of porcelain and some may say it has to be Spode,Royal Doultan or at least Wedgewood and the cups matching. What I do know is that out of pottery, or God forgive, plastic, tea does not taste the same.
Satellites to the Teapot are plates or indeed one tiered plate of delicately made sandwiches of brown or white bread, a slice not measuring more than a half a centimeter in thickness, crusts removed. A filling of smoked salmon, egg, or cucumber is well accepted as well as some green decoration in the form of cress.
Small cakes packed with calories , maybe the toasted flat buns known as teacakes. But what musn’t be missing are the scones-plain, or with dried sultanas in them, served with home made jam and and thick or clotted cream,from Devonshire or Cornwall.
Some people talk of death by chocolate,but for me rather by scones.And it could be quite literal because they do tend to sick very much to the inside of the mouth and throat.Probably why their form has become smaller over the years.
Teatime is a British way of life and as enduring as the ravens.
Anyway London wouldn’t be London for me without tea time, and I do have my favourite venue. Expensive it is but the price is more at the Ritz and there you can’t hope for a seat if you are a normal mortal without booking well in advance.
So when you are in London next try tea in the Hotel Lainsborough at Hyde Park Corner. Heavenly- in the truest sense of the word. You see before the building became a very noble hotel it was a very noble hospital, in fact the first British surgeon operated there and the building even has it’s own ghost.
I know because I lived there once. But I didn’t see her serving tea.