Arrive at any of the 12 Distinctive Inns of New England and you’ll find freshly baked treats and a variety of teas or coffee being served at check-in at almost every inn each afternoon. While each inn handles afternoon refreshments differently, half of the DINE inns offer afternoon tea complete with sweet treats, silver tea pots and china cups. Whether served in front of a roaring fire in the winter or in a brightly sunlit dining room or parlor in the summer, afternoon tea is a real treat at many of the 12 DINE inns. The perfect topper for a romantic New England getaway, enjoy afternoon tea and all the treats to go with it at the Deerfield Inn, Captain’s House Inn, Rabbit Hill Inn, Manor on Golden Pond, Cliffside Inn, and Captain Jefferds Inn.
DINE innkeepers have shared some of these guest-favorite recipes for sweet treats to accompany afternoon tea in your own home.
Milano Cookies from Captain’s House Inn
Oven Temperature: 325°. Yield: Makes approx 28 cookies
¼ Cup Slivered Almonds
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup (2 sticks) Butter, room temperature
1 large Egg Yolk
1 ½ Tsp Vanilla Extract
1 ½ Cups All Purpose Flour
1 Cup Whipping Cream
12 oz Bittersweet (not unsweetened) or Semisweet
6 oz Bittersweet (not unsweetened) or Semisweet Chocolate, chopped
1 ¼ Cups Slivered Almonds, toasted and chopped
Place slivered almonds in processor and add ¼ cup sugar. Grind almonds finely.
Using an electric mixer, beat butter and remaining ¾ cup of sugar in large bowl until well blended. Beat in egg yolk and vanilla extract. Add ground nut mixture and flour and beat until moist clumps form. Gather dough into 2 balls; flatten each ball into disk. Wrap in plastic and freeze for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days.
Grease 2 baking sheets, roll out the dough between the plastic to a scant ¼” thickness. Use a 2 ½” plain rimmed circle cookie cutter and cut out cookies. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, spacing ½ inch apart. Gather scraps and re roll (you may need to re roll between plastic again and place in freezer to firm up, as it is easier to then cut the cookies). Cut out cookies until you run out of dough.
Preheat the oven to 325°. Chill cookies for 15 minutes on baking sheets before baking. Bake cookies for 5 minutes. Reverse sheets and bake until cookies begin to colour, about 6 minutes.
Cool cookies on sheets for 5 minutes, transfer to cooling racks and cool completely.
Bring cream to simmer in a heavy medium saucepan. Remove from heat; add chocolate and whisk until melted and smooth. Let cool until thick but still spread able, about 2 hours.
Place half of the cookies bottom side up on the work surface (you will need to match up the cookies into pairs to be sure they are similar sizes). Using a palate knife, spread a little of the ganache filling onto
the centre of the cookie. Top with the second cookie, bottom side down, pressing to adhere.
Stir chocolate in top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth. Place almonds in a small bowl. Dip end of 1 cookie in the chocolate then the almonds. Transfer to a sheet of foil or stand up in a cooling rack. Repeat with the remaining cookies. Let stand until the garnish is set.
Almond Macaroon Cookie from Rabbit Hill Inn
This is an easy gluten free cookie recipe with only four ingredients. Almond Macaroons are light, airy, and oh-so-delicious. They are always a big hit at Rabbit Hill Inn. And everyone always asks for the recipe. Be warned, you may want to make two batches at a time – they go FAST. The recipe yields approx 40 cookies.
You will be piping out the batter, so have a pastry bag (or makeshift pastry bag) on hand.
1 lb almond paste
10 oz of sugar
4 egg whites
Preheat oven to 325 degrees
In a medium bowl, mix together almond paste, egg whites, and sugar.
Line baking sheets with parchment. Pipe cookie batter onto parchment to your preferred size, about 2 inches apart.
Sprinkle tops with thinly sliced almonds
Bake until a light golden brown. Cookies will be soft to the touch. Allow cookies to cool.
** These cookies freeze very well.
Chesterfield Inn Cranberry Cream Scones
2 cups unsifted flour
3 tsp. baking powder
2 T. sugar
1⁄2 tsp. salt
4 T. cold butter
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1⁄2 cup heavy cream
1⁄2 cup dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Combine dry ingredients; cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal.
Combing eggs, currants and heavy cream; stir into flour mixture with fork, then knead just enough to combine.
Divide dough in half; shape into round about 1-1/2 inch thick. Cut each round into fifths and separate wedges slightly on ungreased baking sheet.
Brush with egg wash.
Bake for 13-15 minutes. (Note: It’s easy to over bake these) Cool on a rack. When cool, mix up a light icing with confectioners sugar and water or lemon juice. Drizzle over top of scones. Makes 10 scones.