Sunday, 16 August 2015

Tea and Buns in the Village Hall

The tea urns and kettles were boiled, rows of cups lined the counters while plates of cakes, buns and tarts tried to seduce the customers.      Little Bunting's last ever village show was under way.

These pretty, fine bone china cups and saucers always set me wondering - they look far too pretty to have been bought by committee, so I wonder whether they were donated, no one seems to know.  Could they have been someone's cherished tea set, for they were expensive in their day.   Whereas the plain blue coffee cups are far more utilitarian and robust, exactly what you would expect, thick and clunky, typical village hall stuff...just as well, for I was also doing the washing-up.

First thing this morning we had an hour and a half to stage our exhibits, fill in the forms, and pay our 25p per item entered.   It is a time for chatting, meeting up with friends and for a little healthy competition.

This was the loaf of bread which I entered as my speciality bread, in truth I had never tried the recipe before.   I just liked the sound of the recipe and the way the loaf looked!   It was a roasted garlic loaf.  I started the loaf last night, left it to prove in the fridge overnight, and then continue again this morning.   We have just tried it and it is delicious.    It is sure to become a favourite to eat with soups, etc.  I'll make some next time you come home, Poppy.

One of the most hotly contested classes was a chocoholics showstopper chocolate cake...

Another well subscribed one was flower arranging.   The hall began to look like a flower shop, there were jugs and vases of roses, dahlias, sweetpeas, mixed blooms, etc.   A visual delight, but also one where I wish smelly vision were possible.   The place smelt like a flower shop.

11am came and people were asked to leave as the judges arrived, to begin their work.  
Who'd be a judge?   
It's just as well they work in isolation and leave before the crowds arrive at 2pm, 
all eager to scan for the results of their endeavours.

The lovely lady in the middle of this photograph won a very special prize, a plate which is awarded once a year in memory of a much loved and missed former stalwart of the village and the WI, Sheila.

Poppy, this was my showstopper cake.   I probably spent almost as much time and effort in cutting out the paper frills, as I spent on making and decorating the cake.   It was fun, but I don't think I want to look at another chocolate cake for quite a while.   Lemon seems so much more appealing - actually, anything but cake would do me.

It was awarded a first - I think the judge was a real chocoholic and the combined waft from over 400g of very good quality dark chocolate, plus masses of dark cocoa powder, overcame her for it certainly wasn't the most beautiful cake!



  1. Congrats on your fist place! Watch out for next year however. I have my whisks at the ready!! It was a fun day wasn't it?

  2. Word is that there won't be one next year, Dom. The organisation falls to the same small group of people (Alison, Annie, etc) I believe they feel they have done their bit over the last 10 years. It's a shame, but understandable - simply clearing away all the trestle tables, chairs and stands, etc takes a good couple of hours of hard and heavy graft after everyone has drifted away. Still, never say never!

  3. Wow congratulations! The bread looks amazing. And I am loving the cups and Saucers. I havent published your comment. I have read it and am here. Cant wait to read more!

  4. Hi Sol, It's lovely to see you over here - and thanks for not publishing, I am keeping it all low key. The bread was fabulous, will definitely be making that one again.


Lovely to hear from you!