#Blandford: Cream Tea & Book Launch for Granny Dot's Recipes

On Sunday the 19th of June 2016, we welcomed local author Vicky Straker through our doors, along with a number of her supportive friends and fans.

A tearoom full of friendly faces always creates a great atmosphere and it certainly was as all enjoyed our delicious drinks and homemade cakes whilst listening to Vicky talk about her new book, hot off the press, Bicycles, Bloomers and Great War Rationing. Emma McAlister, head librarian in Blandford, interviewed Vicky and we discovered the intriguing journey that led Vicky to write this beautiful book, bursting with fascinating history and unusual recipes.

Vicky told us that she has always been a 'foodie' but when she came across her Granny Dot’s books tucked away safely in the attic she realized that not only was her love of baking in the genes, but also her love of writing. The fact that Granny Dot had managed to not only write, but also have published a number of books in an era when it was a difficult feat for a woman to be taken seriously as an author, inspired Vicky to pass on her some of Granny Dot's recipes. Vicky spent many hours ‘sifting’ through these beautiful books, searching out peace and quiet which was often in a nearby field inside a shepherds hut!

Practicing and experimenting with the recipes her Granny Dot had once spent time in the kitchen cooking, her family and friends were now Vicky's official tasters, from trying delicious Nursery Cakes to the not so favourite Jellied Eels! We would like to thank Vicky and all who attended and we look forward to what might be in the pipeline, possibly not history, as Vicky said 'it's more likely to be a racy novel!' Maybe fifty shades of Aubergine!

#beatonsbod: An Osprey in Blandford!

What's your role and what do you like best about your job?
Hello my name is Duncan Bates. I work FOH (Front of House) in Blandford. My favourite part of the job so far is the relaxed and friendly atmosphere, especially now that I have escaped an 8-5 office ‘Rat Race.’

What's your favourite edible or drinkable from our menu?
My favourite edible so far has to be the chilli pepper parcel as I'm a spice addict, but the fantastic fresh ground coffee is a very close second, not to forget the fab cakes.

And how about your favourite book from our shelves?
I'm quite into my cooking so being able to browse the cook books is brilliant, when I have a few moments spare. The ladybird ‘how it works books’ always make me smile too.

Which of the ways we like to go about things at Beatons means most to you and why?
My favourite Beatons way has to be the relaxed courteous service. Everywhere else seems to focus on numbers and speed these days.

If you were an animal, bird or creeping creature what would you be and why?
I think it would have to be an osprey. I have a love of both the sea and air and can often be found out and about with my kites or surfboard, or both at the same time. 
What - outside work - makes your skin tingle?
Right now it’s the ring of steel over my anvil at home. My newest hobby and reason for career change is blacksmithing and being able to have time to focus on what I am passionate about is one of the best feelings ever.

If you could do one thing to change the world for the better what would it be?
To make people realise that money isn't the be all and end all. Being happy and relaxed is far more rewarding.

#tea: the apothecary's tea for every ailment and weight loss!

What is it?  Lemongrass and Mint

One of our more robust herbal teas, the distinctive 'deep' flavours of lemongrass, liquorice and mint make this highly restorative.

Aromatic and slightly astringent - it's a great germ killer! Lemongrass leaves and oil are used in medicines for a wide range of ailments from high blood pressure to rheumatism. When drunk regularly its anti-hyperlipidemic and anti-hypercholesteraemic properties support healthy cholesterol levels. Like most teas it's high in antioxidants and flavonoids.

              Some teas insist our taste buds travel east where curled mint
                    And lemongrass stroke bold hibiscus dressed in Beatons' pink...

Unsurprisingly, given its use in Southeast Asian cuisine, this is an infusion which complements savoury dishes as well as all our desserts. However, scones are made for this tea irrespective of whether you order cheese or sweet with cream and jam as it enhances the flavours of both. Order today and let us know which combination you like best!