A quaint little teashop in a historic part of town is a pleasant setting for a nice, gentle murder mystery. And Death by Darjeeling, our latest Cook the Books Club selection, really is a nice, gentle murder mystery.
|Single estate Kenyan teas|
|Kaamba - "a very malty flavour with light hints of currant"|
There was no doubt at all that these were 3 different teas! Ranging from the small, almost round crumbs of the Kaamba, to the long, plump strands of the Milima, they didn't look at all alike.
Then things started to come a bit unstuck for my career as a tea blender. The teas, tasted by themselves, didn't taste the same, but if my life depended on it I couldn't have described the differences. Honestly, I'm quite good at wine tasting vocabulary, and I can normally pick out if a wine reminds me of tobacco or leather or red fruits or tropical fruit shower gel. But this? It tastes like tea. The taste of dried leaves boiled in water (that's a Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy reference). It's a taste I really like, but I just can't describe what makes the Kaamba different from the Marinyn.
|Milima - "a traditional orthodox tea with a bright liquor"|
To go with the life-saving oolong (it's not oolong, but I'm prepared to bet Bertie Wooster's mostly wasn't either) I decided to make passionfruit melting moments.
The baked goods that Haley produces for Theodosia's shop are things that I think of as very American - blackberry scones (not much like English scones), butter cookies, caramel nut shortbread - so I decided to make one of the pinnacles of the Australian baker's art.
Melting moments are a very old-fashioned sort of biscuit, quite crisp but melting to nothing as you bite them because of the cornflour or custard powder in them. And, as most old-fashioned dishes tend to be, very, very simple. The most traditional ones are vanilla or lemon flavoured, sandwiched with lemon icing, (they have to be sandwiched) but passionfruit are so common in Australia that they turn up a lot too.
I used Dan Lepard's recipe, and it was perfect. I used custard powder (since I'd bought some for another Dan Lepard recipe, his slider buns) and as well as the important melting texture it gave the biscuits a lovely appetising colour. Just the thing to accompany a cup of tea and a good book.
|Passionfruit melting moments|
* Usual disclaimer: the product was provided free of charge, no other compensation was offered or requested, views are my own and no PRs get to vet my copy