Sunday 22nd November 2015

We’ll be at The Guildhall in Winchester this coming Sunday, getting into the swing of Christmas alongside some fabulous local makers and vintage suppliers. 
Doors open at 11am and its £2 to get in (under 12’s are free).

On the menu we have a selection of festive themed bakes alongside some customer favourites. 

We hope to see you there!

Lots of love

Martha’s Tea Party x

The Nostalgic Wedding Fair

Three weeks ago we were sitting at Heathrow Airport about to depart for Abu Dhabi when we got confirmation that there was vehicle space at The Nostalgic Wedding Fair (run by The Vintage Parade) at Winchester Guildhall. It meant we had to get our act together!

Following that email were a few weeks of hard graft getting the last few details of the van finished, a good deep clean inside and out all topped off with a coat of wax. All that was needed was some dressing up and some baking to showcase our offering to the Brides and Grooms of Winchester and beyond.

The night before was full of baking, writing up our new chalkboard (with bargain frame found on eBay) and colouring in cake labels when our printer ran out of ink!

chalkboard

We hit the hay about midnight knowing we’d be up early to get to the Guildhall and set up in time for opening.

Sunday arrived and the weather could not have been more perfect. Winchester is a glorious city to live in, but when the sun shines it draws out the crowds and it’s such a thriving place to be.

journey

We arrived about 10am and soon realised that all the other vehicles were there and we’d lost our spot behind the Vintage Fire Engine. This was actually a blessing in disguise as we didn’t fancy attempting a parallel park.

After parking and opening the hatch we realised that because we were parked on the road that the hatch was too low to be overhanging a pavement. The situation had head injuries written all over it. So we moved away from the curb and decided to head over to The Hambledon to pick up some Honeycomb Paper Balls in Pink and Mint, as we had managed to leave the 6 we got in Sainsbury’s (£3 for a pack of 3!) at home. They were enough of an attention grabber to highlight the hatch opening to passers by and avoiding a paper ball was a much better idea than not seeing a metal hatch.

brandedhvan

It didn’t take long to arrange the Vintage China or the Cakes…

chinashowcasenostalgicweddingcakes2

We took along a load of our Mosser cake stands, our vintage pressed glass cake stands and an assortment of our finest vintage china to showcase what we have on offer.

Sweet treats wise we had…

* A 4 layer Victoria Sponge topped with fresh fruit
* Merginues
* Mint Chocolate Chip Brownies
* Rocky Road
* Vanilla Cupcakes topped with Buttercream Roses
* Mini Vanilla Cupcakes topped with Vanilla Buttercream and Sprinkles
* 4" Pink Ombre Rose Cake

nostalgicweddingcakes1workattire1
Everything looked fabulous – the van, the cakes, the china, the staff. We had our new flyers and promo badges displayed on the counter too.
badgesflyers

Winchester was bustling with activity. Race for Life had taken place around the corner, the Farmers Market was in full swing and The Nostalgic Wedding Fair was drawing the crowds. We had a great day talking tea, cake, and all things vintage. Check out our Facebook page for the official photos from the event taken by the very talented Ash Darling Photography.

We hope everyone had a lovely day, and got lots of ideas for their weddings.

Lots of Love

Martha’s Tea Party x

Making a Difference

This past Bank Holiday weekend we got involved with a charity tea party fundraising for The Moldova Project. There was no baking involved, we just provided our lovely vintage tea cup trios (including our Melmex trios for the kids) and a variety of cake stands.

The day could not have been better; the sun was out, the jugs of Pimms were at the ready and the BBQ was fired up.

Tea Cup Trios

Vintage Tea Cup TriosThe teacups were gleaming in the sunshine. It really does warm our hearts to see new life breathed into items that have spent the best part of the last 30/40 years in storage or behind glass deemed too precious to use. Nothing this pretty should be put away. Ever.

Whilst we love baking and all things cakey, shop bought cakes do still make a great impression on our vintage china. Makes the difference between just a regular party spread and something that little bit special. This looks seriously inviting…

Tea Party

We hope that everyone who attended had a great day and raised lots of money for a very worthy cause.

If you have a charity event coming up and would like something a bit different, get in touch to discuss your requirements. We’d love to help out.

Lots of love

Martha’s Tea Party x

Bank Holiday Baking Bonanza

We finally got back in the kitchen last week and we wasted no time cooking up an absolute storm.  We had lost time to make up for!

On the agenda for a wedding dessert buffet…

* Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Pink Buttercream
* Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Purple Buttercream
* Mini Vanilla Cupcakes with Mini Eggs
* Pink Swirl Meringues
* Purple Swirl Meringues

It’s always so satisfying to take cupcakes out of the oven and them be so level. Our secret to this is measuring the mixture in exactly and doing a test batch with varying amounts of batter in. Of course, once you’ve found that magic number you just need to remember it for next time. Our mini vanilla cupcakes take 10g of batter each.

Flat mini cupcakes

We whipped up a huge batch of vanilla buttercream, then divided it up for colouring. Mini cupcakes three ways…

Mini Egg Cupcakes

Pink Mini Cupcakes

Mini Purple Cupcakes

Each cupcake was a mini swirl of buttercream, topped with edible glitter, mimosa and Cadbury Mini Eggs. Yum!

Next on the list of bakes were the mini meringues. Theres something immensely satisfying about making them. We love watching how eggs and sugar completely transform from their raw form into something truly decadent.Whisking Meringues

Out of the oven and ready to go!
Purple MeringuesPink Meringues

They were boxed up, branded and delivered to Pitt Hall Barn along with a crate of Vintage Glass Cake Stands, ready for their wedding debut.

Pink Boxed cupcakes

Vintage Glass Cake Stands

We’ll hopefully get some nice photos of them in situ to share with you soon, so keep an eye on our Instagram.

With all that cake baked and delivered, we certainly earned our chocolate on Sunday. Hope you all had a lovely long weekend and made the most of the sunshine whilst it was out!

Lots of Love

Martha’s Tea Party x

Tea, Cake and Adventure

For those of you waiting for the news after the our last post, we’re sorry it’s been over a week since then!  Hopefully the news that we have a new addition to the Martha’s Tea Party team will not disappoint.

Introducing our as yet un-named Citroen H Van! Citroen H Van

Born in France in 1958, she spent her working life in the Sapeurs-pompiers (the French Fire Service). She boasts a recently upgraded 1900cc Petrol Engine, 45 brake horse power and a top speed of 50mph. Left hand drive, suicide doors, split windscreen, and unnamed buttons and levers galore she’s a real character.

Branded Hatch Citroen H Van She is kitted out with kitchen units in the back and has a side hatch fitted ready for taking orders and serving our delicious bakes. We were eager to get our new magnets on the side ready for the drive home, “any advertising is good advertising” as they say.

The journey home was rather long and a bit nerve-wracking. The gearbox requires double de-clutching, so it’s a bit different to the cars we drive today. Add on the reduced visibility with it being a left hand drive and the lack of power steering and it’s hard work! Thankfully, there were a few miles of country roads to get a hang of things before we hit the A303. Citroen H Van on the Road

As the sun was starting to set, we stopped for some dinner at the Cartgate Picnic Area. We’d only been on the road for about 15 miles, but it felt like an eternity… and we still had 75 miles to go! Road Trip!

Now with her being such an old vehicle, many of the mod-cons we take for granted are not available. Things like a petrol gauge, oil dipper and temperature gauge. At the moment these things feel quite daunting, but we’ll soon be pros!Branded Citroen H Van

After so many weeks of grey skies and not much sunshine, the day was beautiful and was ended with the most colourful sunset we’ve seen in a long time. But this also signalled it was going to get dark and we were just over half way home. As the sun dipped behind the horizon, it was time to try out the lights. Someone pointed out that she looks a bit like Darth Vader in this photo, we have to agree. Citroen H Van Lights

We finally pulled up on the driveway of HQ at about 8:30pm, weary from the drive but excited about the future.

We’ve got to make a few alterations to the set up in the back before we’ll be ready to start trading, and we’ll also have some hoops to jump through for the Local Council. So watch this space and we’ll do some updates as we go to keep you informed.

Lots of Love

Martha’s Tea Party x

One Of Your Five a Day!

So we can’t actually vouch for that, but this carrot cake is packed full of carrots, sultanas, walnuts and orange zest and topped with pecans for extra punch. What’s the occasion? Well it’s Happy Friday of course!

This may or may not have been our breakfast here at HQ this morning…

Carrot Cake Close UpCarrot Cake and Milkshake  
This week we’ve been busy working on ‘secret’ business again. If all goes to plan (and keep your fingers & toes crossed that it does), we’ll be able to share our news after the weekend. It’s been an exciting and stressful journey just to get to this stage… and theres still two more days to go! *deep breaths*

In preparation though, some new signage has arrived. Currently living on the kitchen fridge, where it looks quite at home.

Pink Fridge Sign

BrandYou may have been wondering how the branding of Martha’s Tea Party originated. We have a very clever and talented friend who did the design for us, based on a load of collaboration work pulling out elements of other brands we admired on Pinterest. The final result was exactly what we were after and we can’t wait to see it in situ at the weekend.

On the thrifty finds front, this beautiful grey and pink Duchess China tea set arrived along with a pressed glass cake stand. All washed up and ready to be hired ❤

Vintage China

The last batch of cupcakes for the week are due to come out of the oven soon, we can’t wait to decorate them. We’ve been in fits of giggles all week! We’ll tell all next week. Until then, enjoy the weekend!

Lots of Love

Martha’s Tea Party x

If it’s good enough for royalty…

As the week has progressed, stress levels have increased and big decisions have been required. In order to fuel it, there was only one solution…

Chocolate Fridge Cake

Did you know McVities made a Chocolate Biscuit Cake for the wedding of Prince William to Kate Middleton? Neither did we until this morning, but if it’s good enough for royalty…

At Martha’s Tea Party, we take Chocolate Fridge Cake seriously. We believe in cramming as much chocolate as is physically possible into these little slabs of delight. To do this, we use 3 types of chocolate and cocoa powder. The result is immense.

Chocolate Three Ways

Chocolate Fridge Cake

Some people add fruit to their Chocolate Fridge Cake. In our opinion dried fruit is not a welcome addition. After all, its just taking up space that chocolate could fill.

We mix golden syrup, butter and lots of chocolate into the base. Then add crushed digestive biscuits not only for a bit of extra sweetness but for that lovely soft crunch they provide. To finish, we top with 3 types of chocolate and get a bit creative with a skewer.

Chocolate Fridge Cake

We had ours with a glass of milk, but a cup of tea would go equally well. Chocolate Fridge Cake holds up well at room temperature, but nothing beats that extra bite from cold. If your teeth are good, try it straight from the freezer.

In other news this week, we found this cute Royal Albert Sugar Bowl. It looked so lonely amongst a shelf of mugs that it had to be re-homed. Vintage China is just too pretty to sit unloved somewhere.Royal Albert Sugar Bowl

Our last bake of the week is currently in the oven, so a report of that to come after the weekend. Enjoy your weekend whatever you are up to!

Lots of Love

Martha’s Tea Party x