Some of you might have noticed that there’s been a bit of fuss in the UK over the past few days – something about the Queen and sixty years? Whatever. It is not the job of this blog to stay up to date with current affairs. Currant buns, maybe, but not the news. Unless it has some bearing on puddings…
Oh, all right then. The Queen’s 60th Jubilee is kind of important. But only because it led to one of the most gorgeous cream teas I’ve had on this tiny isle: a Jubilee Tea from my favourite shop in the Kingdom of Dorset, Chococo.
For those who don’t know it – and who’ve missed my past musings on the subject (see here and here) – Chococo is that wonderful combination of chocolate-shop-cum-tea-room, based in Swanage and faithful to the principles of hand-made, ethical, local, scrumptious treats. When I heard that they were doing a one-off Jubilee Tea for Bank Holiday, I bought my tickets immediately.
Suddenly, all these Royal Celebrations seemed like an awfully good idea.
For the bargainous sum of just ten pounds – TEN! – the Man and I were treated to two-tiers of drool-inducing goodies, and a couple of the tastiest dark hot chocolates I have had since Jaz and Jul’s came to town.
Twas a menu fit for a Queen – not to mention her most porcine of subjects. In the savoury category, Coronation Chicken (duly eaten by my carniverous ally), and Egg and Cress Cucumber Tarlets did the job superbly. But then – then! – came dessert:
- Mini Madagascan Chocolate Chip Scones with Cherry Jam and Clotted Cream
- A Chocolate Mousse Crown with Fruit and Popping Candy
- Dubonnet and Juniper Chocolates
- A Lemon Fairycake
- A Strawberry Meringue filled with White Chocolate and Creme Fraiche
- Sea Salt and Caramel Ganache Tartlets
It. Was. Stupendous.
The fairycake: so fresh and zingy. The Tartlets: crispy shortbread-like pastry, cuddling smooth pools of caramel. As for the Dubonnet and Juniper Chocolates? Cor. I felt like Christmas had come early.
Of course, I thoroughly enjoyed my Chocolate Scones as well (something they routinely serve in the Chococo cafe). In fact, let’s be honest, they make so much more sense than studding a scone with sultanas. As does the concept of a Chocolate Crown, now I come to think about it (all these years, I thought pastry was the best way to encase a mousse. What a fool I was).
As I’m sure you can imagine, it was hard to choose a favourite, but – if hard-pressed – I think I would have plumped for the meringue. Fruit and white chocolate will always float my boat (or River Pageant), especially when the texture is so moreish…
Roused by a newfound sense of patriotism we polished it off in no time, wishing we’d both had a cakestand each.
I just hope we don’t have to wait sixty years for the next one.
Frankly, even ten is pushing it.