Monday, October 4, 2010

fall tea party

This weekend I had the pleasure of getting together with most of my favourite ladies and enjoying some tea and treats.  After spending most of the weekend preparing, it was nice to sit down, relax and catch up.

I love putting together the menus for my tea parties.  Nothing makes me happier (seriously, nothing) than planning an array of seasonal baked goods and sandwiches; making sure it all flows and that everyone will be happy.  One of my friends has Celiac disease, so I had to ensure there were gluten-free options available.  It’s a good challenge and I always like finding new recipes that everyone will enjoy that are gluten-free.

This time we made an effort to decorate seasonally too.  Kate did most of the decorating and she did a fabulous job.  We were both pretty excited (definitely more Kate) about the mumpkin (mums in a pumpkin) found at the local farmer’s market.
I’ll be featuring the recipes over the week, and will start with one of the clear favourites.  The cinnamon cake with apple compote was a real hit at the party.  It was so moist and delicious.  The best part for me was that it was super easy too!  I found the recipe in the latest Food & Drink magazine (thanks to my Dad for picking up a copy for me).

Buttery Cinnamon Cake with Apple Compote
from Food & Drink

For the cake:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup sour cream

For the glaze:
2 tbsp packed brown sugar
Pinch of ground cinnamon
2 tbsp water

For the compote:
4 large red-skinned apples, peeled and diced
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon or cardamom
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp vanilla


1. Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease the sides of a 9-inch springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
2. Combine flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.  In a separate bowl (or your stand mixer) beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg and vanilla until blended.  Stir in flour mixture alternately with sour cream. Spread into prepared pan, smoothing top.
3. Bake for 45 minutes or until tester inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Let cool in pan on a rack for 30 minutes.
4. For the glaze, combine ingredients in a small bowl and whisk.  Brush top and sides with glaze and serve warm or slide the cake off the pan onto a rack and cool completely.
5.  Meanwhile, prepare the apple compote.  Combine ingredients (except the vanilla) in a saucepan and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.  Cover and reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until apples are tender but still keep their shape.  Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.  Serve with warm slices of cake and whipped cream.

Note: If not serving right away, cool completely and wrap it well.  When you want to serve it, wrap in tin foil and heat for 10 to 15 minutes at 350F.


  1. Oh my god Caitlin - I am still dreamining about that cake it was SO mindblowing. I want to make it for myself for thanksgiving but feel like it would never live up to your standards ha ha!


  2. Thanks for posting the cake recipe. I was craving it all day yesterday. I will definitely make it today! Thanks for the beautiful tea party.