It is May 1, and the St. George United Methodist Church's Tea Room is today and tomorrow from 11:30 a.m. through 2 p.m. No, this is not a repeat of last week's column. It is a column in response to an amazing flood of readers' emails in which they asked for additional information about the tea room. I felt perhaps I should "fill in the blanks" for you all.
Please know that anyone is welcome to attend and reservations are not required. As for the fixed hours, the tea room does last from 11:30 a.m. until 2 p.m., and the volunteers will close the entry door at 2 p.m., but folks in line will be served and guests who are eating won't be rushed out. But, you are encouraged to arrive before 11 or 11:30 to beat the crowd. There are always tons of call-in/take-out orders, and people planning to attend will start lining up early.
The most commonly sought information was the address of the church which is 120 North Parler Ave., St George, SC 29477. The most direct route from Orangeburg is to take U.S. Highway 178 East out of Orangeburg toward Bowman. Drive straight on through Bowman and keep going for about 10 miles. The very first stop sign is at U.S. Highway 15. Take a right at that stop sign and drive eight miles into St George. As you get to the second traffic light you will see the church on your left. There is plenty of parking just passed the churchyard.
And, finally there were several ladies who asked how they should dress. For readers who have attended a "proper tea" not held "mid-work week," you know that people usually wear dressy attire, which often includes an array of lovely hats. But for this particular event, a good number of folks will come to the tea room on their lunch hours. Thus there may be various kinds of attire, but folks will not be casual by any means.
I truly hope this information is helpful. And, whether or not you are planning to attend the event in St. George, I am taking an opportunity to share recipes for two more excellent desserts that are sometimes available at the tea room. I hope you will enjoy them both!
Million Dollar Pound Cake
3/4 cup finely chopped pecans (optional)
1 pound (4 sticks) salted butter at room temperature
3 cups sugar
4 cups White Lily all purpose flour, sifted once before measuring
3/4 cup whole milk
2 teaspoons almond extract
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees. Grease and flour a 10-inch tube cake pan. Sprinkle the finely chopped pecans evenly over the bottom of the pan. (Please note that this cake is just as good without nuts.)
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and gradually add the sugar, beating well at medium speed with an electric mixer. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat well after each addition. Add 1 cup of flour, then 1/4 cup of milk, then 1 cup of flour, then 1/4 cup of milk, then 1 cup of flour, then 1/4 cup of milk, then the last cup of flour, beating well after each addition. Finally, stir the extracts into the mixture just until blended. Pour the batter into the pan. Bake at 300 degrees for one hour and 40 minutes or until a wooden pick or piece of uncooked spaghetti inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan for 15 minutes. Remove the cake from the pan and allow it to cool on a rack. If you plan to glaze the cake, do it while it is still slightly warm.
2 cups confectioner’s (powdered) sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons almond extract
Small amount of milk
To make the glaze: In a medium bowl, combine confectioner’s sugar, 1-1/2 teaspoons almond extract and a small amount of milk. Blend the mixture, adding either milk or powdered sugar to get a very creamy, but flowing glaze. Spoon the glaze on top of the warm cake and let it flow over the sides.
Million Dollar Pie
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup lemon juice
9-ounce container prepared whipped topping (low-calorie variety if preferred)
1 cup chopped pecans (lightly toasted pecans are best)
20-ounce can crushed pineapple, well drained
1 cup flaked coconut (optional, lightly toasted is best)
2 graham cracker pie shells or 2 baked regular pie shells
In a large bowl, stir together well the condensed milk and lemon juice. Then, add the remaining ingredients. Stir well and pour the pie mixture into graham cracker shells or baked pie shells. Refrigerate overnight or for several hours before serving. Note: Any kind of fruit can be substituted for the pineapple.