I’m joining The Novel Bakers for Tea Party Week, with The Vintage Sweets Book: A Complete Guide to Vintage Sweets and Cocktail Party Treats
by Angel Adoree, British Author, Expert of all things Vintage, Stylist and Baker
Welcome to the world of Vintage Sweets where with a ‘spoonful of sugar’ and a little imagination, you can create your favorite vintage sweets and party treats for every soirée.
Angel Adoree cordially invites you to a time when life was sweeter, more sophisticated and simpler. Each chapter is filled with delightful retro sweet recipes and tempting cocktails as well as craft projects to help bring the magic to life.
This book is divided into three chapters representing the techniques used in transforming humble sugar into something marvelous and magical.
I was intrigued by the Parma Violet Cocktail which calls for violet flavoring. I used a recipe fromCooking with Flowers to make a viola syrup. I made a small amount, enough for a couple of cocktails with the last of the violas that were moments away from languishing in our record-breaking heat. . .just like me :)
As with any edible flower, only use pansies or violas that are pesticide and chemical free. Pick your flowers in the morning when they are fresh, avoiding older bruised blooms. Rinse gently to “debug” them. Remove each pansy or viola from its sepals (green base). If your petals tear when removing sepals, it won’t matter for the syrup.
For pansy/viola syrup:
2 – 3 cups fresh or dried flower blossoms
2 cups boiling water
1/2 cup sugar
Place blossoms in a medium bowl and pour boiling water over them. Let them stand for 2 hours. In a pan over medium heat, bring flower water and sugar to a simmer. Cook for 4 minutes, then remove from heat and pour through a fine mesh strainer into a glass container. Discard solids and refrigerate up to a month.
For Parma Violet Cocktail:
2 ounces peach schnapps
2 ounces pansy/viola syrup
2 ounces vodka
1 tablespoon lime juice
I used lime around edge of glass and rimmed it with purple sanding sugar for an additional sweet note!
To a cocktail shaker filled with ice add lime juice, schnapps, vodka and syrup. Shake and strain into glasses. Top off with sparkling water.
Garnish with violas or violets if desired.
In addition to the whimsy and vintage fun in this series of tea party books, I was charmed by the adorable illustrations by Adele Mildred. It gave me an excuse to invite the mice and bunnies for a little tea party whimsy and fun.
I’m not one for candy making, but I broke out the candy thermometer for Rum & Raisin Fudge!
Rum And Raisin Fudge (20 – 24 squares)
2 oz. dark rum (I used a 1 ½ oz. mini bottle)
3 – 4 oz. raisins, roughly chopped
7 tablespoons butter, plus extra for greasing
14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
4 oz. milk
1 lb. *demerara sugar (*demerara sugar is unrefined and has a natural caramel-like flavor. If you can’t find it, substitute brown sugar.)
Place rum in a bowl with chopped raisins. Set aside to soak.
Prepare 8” pan by lining it with parchment paper. Grease paper for easy removal of fudge.
Combine the remaining ingredients in a large nonstick pan over a medium heat and stir until the sugar dissolves.
Bring the mixture to the boil, then simmer gently for 10–15 minutes*, stirring constantly, until it reaches 116.C (240.F) – the soft-ball stage. (*mine took about 30 minutes to reach soft-ball stage).
Remove pan from the heat and allow the temperature of the mixture to drop to 110.C (230.F) Beat with a wooden spoon for about 10 minutes until mixture is thick and has the consistency of smooth peanut butter. This step is important for thickening the fudge.
Stir in rum and raisins, then pour the mixture into the prepared pan and set aside for about 3 hours to cool. (I placed mine in the refrigerator overnight before easy cutting.)
When the fudge has cooled and set, lift paper by edges to remove from pan. Cut into squares.
You can find adorable downloads like templates for boxes for your candy from the author’s website, here.
Jazzies are easy to make and require only two ingredients! The chocolate of your choice (milk, dark or white) and sprinkles or nonpareils.
Melt your chocolate using your preferred method.
I used a Wilton Easy-Pour Funnel help control the flow of the melted chocolate. Place your melted chocolate “coins” on parchment or wax paper and add sprinkles and allow them to harden.
Have your chocolate and drink it too with a Jazzies Cocktail!
4 ounces of milk or half and half
2 ounces chocolate liqueur
2 ounces chocolate syrup
sprinkles/ nonpareils for rimming
Rim glass with sprinkles by dipping glass in chocolate syrup then into a bowl of sprinkles of your choice.
Add milk or half and half, chocolate syrup and liqueur to cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well and pour into rimmed glass.
Join us for more tea time fun and inspiration when The Novel Bakers return on Friday with The Vintage Tea Party Year.
Visit my fellow Novel Bakers for Vintage Tea Party Week: