Dispensing Happiness

A good cook is like a sorceress who dispenses happiness.-Elsa Schiapirelli

That's me, the magical good cook.

Borrowing from my friend Dexygus, I've created my own food blog.

Read of my exploits in the kitchen! Salivate over the descriptions of fabulous desserts and savory meals I've concocted!

No, seriously...go ahead. It'll make my day.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Tea for Two, Me for You


I know it's a sort of stock-in-trade, for wives to complain about husbands, and husband go on about their nagging wives.

It's the basis of many a sitcom, rom-com (hate that term) and stand-up comedy act.

I have friends who can't complete a telephone call without listing the latest faults of their spouse.

But not me. No, you never hear me complain about Matt. And if you ask me why, I'll tell you: I got lucky.

Sure, I roll my eyes when I see the pile of dirty clothes he's collecting on the floor, not six inches from the hamper in our room.

I wonder, sometimes, how it is that our four year old son always remembers, without prompting, to put his dirty dishes in the sink, but not his dad.

I may utter something unfit for children's ears when I trip over the shoes he's kicked off in the middle of the living room floor.

Yes, all that happens. And I suppose I could make a big deal about it.

But I don't. Because, I got lucky.

See, I have a husband who checks the bathtub for spiders before I get in the shower.

Who gets up weekend mornings, and automatically makes me a cup of tea.

Who never forgets my birthday, or special anniversaries.

Who takes the time to make and hand-roll sushi for me, because the only good sushi restaurant in town closed down.

Who indulges my 'habit' of sending care packages to people all over the globe, and never complains about the cost.

Who, in collusion with Alex, buys me a fresh bouquet of flowers every week, just because they think I ought to have them.

Who knows that little things like putting a new gallon of water in the refrigerator at night, so I'll have something cold to drink in the morning, makes me happier than if he'd handed me a diamond necklace.

Who find the best gifts...from plump & gorgeous vanilla beans to a CSI field kit.

And because I married a guy who thinks it would be a wonderful idea to spend a vacation day taking his wife to a tea house.

Matt & I spent a lovely hour at Tea at the Gallery last week.

A very nice place, bright and open. Small tables, set simply with linens and silver(plated) pieces.

The walls were hung with 'art for sale'; we sat next to a large painting of a girl in a hat, with an asking price of $1900.00...!

There were only a few people there, but I quickly noted to Matt that he was only person there with the 'Y' chromosome.

We ordered the Signature Tea, and selected the Russian Caravan (dark coppery color; smoky aroma).

It was a wonderful tea, with a what I can only call an Asian-ness in it's final note.

And yes, I had the worst time taking pictures. Nicely lit place, just not for photography.

The service was as it should be. Our server was very prompt with ordering and delivery our food, but from there...pretty much left us alone. We were able to just sit and talk, drink and eat.
And from all the mom's out there, can I get a 'heck, yeah!'?

Our 'Signature' tea included small bowls of carrot-raisin salad (Matt noted it was very much like coleslaw), and little ham pinwheels (so I have no idea if they were good)

There were three flavors of finger sandwiches: ham, cheese, and spinach-artichoke. Didn't have the first (obviously), the second was simply orange cheese slices, but the veggie sandwich was quite good. And, I'm almost ashamed to admit, quite possibly the first time I've eaten artichokes.

(we ate around the raisin!)

We had a nice selection of sweets, as well...I know the girl rattled off the names of each, but I can't remember a single one.

Very nice tarts, very molasses-y.

I've no idea what this is. We noticed the coconut, and moved on.

Scones with clotted cream!!

This was another first for me. First time eating clotted cream (here with strawberry jam), and...

first time eating lemon curd. Very good, both.

There were also slices of poundcake, which refused to have it's picture taken.

It was a wonderful afternoon, talking over tea, no kids or dogs distracting us.

We bought some of the Russian Caravan to take home, and 'oohed' and 'ahhed' over all the fabulous tea pots for sale.

Of course, we then left the tranquility of the tea house for the heart-racing action of an afternoon matinee, The Bourne Ultimatum!

But as I said, I got a good one. No complaints from me....

12 Thoughts for food:

At 5:09 PM, Blogger Erin said...

Lucky indeed!

I'm drooling over scones with clotted cream. Yum!

At 5:18 PM, Blogger barbie2be said...

does he ave any brothers that are single and straight? :)

At 12:30 AM, Blogger Elle said...

And don't you deserve that luck, being such a nice, generous person yourself? That tea looks wonderful and reminds me of having tea with my sister in Benecia, CA in the Camillia tea room on First St. A similar array of goodies on three tiers and good tea...lots of conversation for hours with no interruptions...heaven!

At 2:17 PM, Blogger Valli said...

If he does have any brothers are they willing to relocate???? The tea house sounds like a wonderful place for a nice relaxing conversation over a "spot" of tea. I have been to a few tea houses in my time but with my daughter and girlfriends.

At 2:29 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Erin, no kidding!

Oh, they were sooo good. Dainty bite-sized things, too.

At 2:30 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Barbie...well, his older brother is single, but I'm afraid he's rather married to his work! He's a Prof. at the University of Texas, Austin. Between teaching and writing books, I'm not sure if he has time for anything else.

At 2:31 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Elle; oh...thank you!

It was a wonderful time. I wish we could have stayed longer...I'm sure the staff would have had no objections...but we had plans to catch a movie, and needed to pick Alex up from school when it was over. So, next time? We won't schedule anything for after the tea!

At 2:32 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Valli, well...as I said, he's kind of busy, plus he's rather settled there in Austin!

At 12:26 AM, Blogger Cakelaw said...

You are lucky - what a gem Matt is! The tea tray looks magnificent.

At 3:32 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Cakelaw; you aren't kidding! I am, and he is.

I just love the idea of someone bringing me tea...

At 5:57 PM, Anonymous Roberta said...

Hi! Indeed! such a lovely husband like that deserves you to take easy on him about nagging on triffle things! :-) ah, that coconnut you moved on... I've already tasted sth similar here, in Brazil, it's delicious.. :-)

At 1:03 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Roberta...neither of us is perfect, and we recognize that. Whatever it is we're doing, seems to work!


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