A Literary Tea Party: Blends and Treats for Alice, Bilbo, Dorothy, Jo, and Book Lovers Everywhere

A Literary Tea Party: Blends and Treats for Alice, Bilbo, Dorothy, Jo, and Book Lovers Everywhere


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**Finalist in the 2019 Goodreads Choice Awards**

For fans of Jane Austen, Mark Twain, Agatha Christie, Robert Louis Stevenson, William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, and more, a literary-inspired cookbook for voracious readers and tea lovers everywhere

Tea and books: the perfect pairing. There's nothing quite like sitting down to a good book on a lovely afternoon with a steaming cup of tea beside you, as you fall down the rabbit hole into the imaginative worlds of Alice in Wonderland, The Hobbit, and The Chronicles of Narnia.

Fire up your literary fancies and nibble your way through delicate sweets and savories with A Literary Tea Party, which brings food from classic books to life with a teatime twist. Featuring fifty-five perfectly portioned recipes for an afternoon getaway, including custom homemade tea blends and beverages, you will have everything you need to plan an elaborate tea party. Cook up and enjoy:
  • Turkish Delight while sipping on the White Witch’s Hot Chocolate from The Chronicles of Narnia
  • Drink Me Tea with the Queen of Hearts’s Painted Rose Cupcakes from Alice in Wonderland
  • Eeyore’s “Hipy Bthuthday” Cake with Hundred Acre Hot Chocolate from Winnie the Pooh
  • Hannah’s Sweet Potato Bacon Pastries and Jo’s Gingerbread from Little Women
  • Tom Sawyer’s Whitewashed Jelly Doughnuts from Tom Sawyer
  • And more!

Come relax with Sherlock Holmes, Long John Silver, Winnie-the Pooh, Bilbo Baggins, Ebeneezer Scrooge, and more. Accompanied with photographs and book quotes, these recipes, inspired by the great works of literature, will complement any good book for teatime reading and eating.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781510729100
Publisher: Skyhorse
Publication date: 06/05/2018
Pages: 160
Sales rank: 245,731
Product dimensions: 7.60(w) x 9.60(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Alison Walsh first began cooking as a way to stretch her post-college paycheck, and her love of cooking grew. In 2014, she combined her love of food and books into Alison’s Wonderland Recipes (WonderlandRecipes.com), a food blog dedicated to book-inspired recipes. She guest writes for Real Life at Home and her recipes have been featured on MuggleNet, the number one Harry Potter fan website. She lives in Des Plaines, Illinois.
Sara Letourneau is a speculative fiction writer for teens and adults. She is a poet, tea reviewer, music journalist, and columnist at DIY MFA and Writers Helping Writers. She lives in Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

Read an Excerpt



In literature, savory foods are often used to give us insight into characters' personalities. In Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot mysteries, the fastidious, orderly detective breakfasts on the same thing every day: two perfectly identical eggs and a piece of toast cut into perfect squares. In A Little Princess, the imaginative Sara Crewe copes with hunger by dreaming up a grand, exotic feast to sustain herself.

By observing the meals of characters, the reader is able to bond with them over one of the most fundamental shared human experiences: food. And when we cook their foods in our own kitchens, we connect with them even more. We bridge the gap between fiction and reality, making real that which was previously just fantasy.

As we prepare food we've read about in books and slide it out steaming from our ovens, characters become more than just words on a page — their world becomes a reality in our own homes.

apple of life bites

from The Magician's Nephew by C. S. Lewis

Makes 8 apple disks

"He knew which was the right tree at once, partly because it stood in the very center and partly because the great silvery apples with which it was loaded shone so and cast a light of their own down on the shadowy places where the sunlight did not reach."

This easy snack brings together sweet-tart apples, salty bacon, savory pecans, and smooth crème de brie for a fun twist on apple slices.


4 slices bacon
1 Granny Smith apple
½ cup (approximately 2.5 oz) crème de Brie
3 tsp pecan chips, toasted if desired


1 Fry the bacon and allow it to drain on a plate lined with a paper towel. Chop the bacon into bits.

2 Core and slice the apple into ¼-inch-thick disks.

3 Spread each disk with 1 tablespoon of crème de Brie. Sprinkle on the pecan chips and chopped bacon.

Serve at a magnificent Narnian feast!

Tea pairing

Tea with Tumnus, p. 126

badger's set salad bites

From The Borrowers by Mary Norton

Makes 15 salad bites

"They had hips and haws and blackberries and sloes and wild strawberries ... Think of a salad made of those tender shoots of young hawthorn ... with sorrel and dandelion ... Homily was a good cook remember."

These fresh and fruity salad bites offer a true balance of flavors: sweet berries, salty seeds, slightly earthy greens, and a bit of bite from the strawberry balsamic vinegar.


15 dandelion greens*
8 small strawberries
30 blueberries (approximately ½ cup)
Edible flowers**
3 Tbsp salted sunflower seeds Strawberry balsamic vinegar***

Special Tools

15 toothpicks


1 Rinse and dry your greens and berries. Check your greens for any that have bristly hairs on their spines. Store-bought dandelion greens usually come in bundles, so only choose greens with smooth spines from the bundle.

2 Trim your greens into 4-inch long strips and cut the strawberries into wedges.

3 To assemble, insert a toothpick through one end of a dandelion green and slide the green to the bottom of the toothpick. Slide a strawberry wedge and a blueberry width-wise onto the toothpick. Then slide on another strawberry wedge and blueberry. Insert the toothpick through the other end of the dandelion green. Depending on the flowers you use, they may be sturdy enough to be inserted onto the toothpick. Delicate blossoms can be tucked in beside the berries. To finish, sprinkle on some sunflower seeds.

4 Repeat Step 3 with the remaining salad components.

5 Sprinkle some strawberry vinegar onto the salad bites.

Serve while visiting your favorite Borrower at their badger's set home!

Tea pairing

Arrietty's Cherry Tree Tea, p. 119

* Dandelion greens can be found at most major grocery stores when they are in season, which is January through May.

** The salad bites pictured feature strawberry blossoms. Be sure to use flowers that are clean and free of pesticides and chemicals.

*** To make your own strawberry balsamic vinegar, coarsely chop 3 large or 5 medium strawberries and place them in a mason jar. Completely submerge the strawberries in white balsamic vinegar. Seal the container and leave it to sit overnight at room temperature. After that, strain out and discard the strawberries. Store the strawberry balsamic vinegar in a sealed mason jar in the refrigerator.

big apple hand pies

From James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl

Makes 12 hand pies

"And suddenly — everyone who had come over on the peach was a hero! They were all escorted to the steps of City Hall, where the Mayor of New York made a speech of welcome."

These savory hand pies are filled with melted Gouda and apple slices seasoned with thyme. Named for James's final destination — the Big Apple — their buttery, flaky crust topped with a dash of salt brings it all together into a tiny package filled with big flavor.


¼ small Gala apple
1 tsp thyme*
1 — 2 oz Gouda cheese
2 sheets premade pie dough
1 egg, lightly beaten
½ tsp kosher salt


3-inch apple-shaped cookie cutter


1 Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

2 Slice the apple quarter into 6 slices. Cut the slices in half width-wise.

3 Toss the apple pieces in a small bowl with thyme and set aside.

4 Cut the Gouda into 12 1¼-inch squares. Set aside.

5 On a lightly floured surface, unroll the first sheet of pie dough (keep the second sheet in the fridge until you're ready for it). Cut 12 apple shapes out of the dough and evenly space them on the prepared baking sheet.

6 Place an apple slice in the center of each piece of dough and place a Gouda square on top. Brush the edges of the dough with the beaten egg.

7 Unroll your second sheet of pie dough and cut out 12 more apple shapes. Place them on top of the first set of cutouts and crimp the edges with a fork.

8 Brush the tops of the hand pies with the beaten egg and prick each one 2 — 3 times with a fork. Sprinkle with kosher salt.

9 Bake for 17 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Serve warm after a long journey to New York City!

Tea pairing

Summery Peach Tea, p. 126

* You can also substitute ½ tsp cinnamon for 1 tsp thyme if you'd like to emphasize the sweet flavors over the savory.

bread and butterflies

From Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll

Makes 10 bite-size sandwiches

"Its wings are thin slices of Bread-and-butter, its body is a crust, and its head is a lump of sugar."

The key to a good cucumber sandwich is delicacy and quality ingredients. Things like slicing the cucumbers thin and splurging on fancy butter (such as Kerrygold) go a long way here!


¼ cup softened butter
1 Tbsp snipped fresh chives
10 slices white bread*
1 — 2 mini cucumbers, cut into 20 thin disks
10 3-inch lengths fresh chives
10 small sprigs fresh dill**

Special Tools

2½-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter


1 In a small bowl, mix the butter with the snipped fresh chives and set aside.

2 Cut your bread into 20 hearts (you should get 2 hearts from each slice). Thinly spread the chive butter onto the hearts.

3 Cut 10 of your cucumber disks in half to make half- moon shapes. On 10 of your hearts, place 1 full disk near the bottom of each heart and a half-moon piece in each of the two curves near the top. It should look like the image below.

4 Place your remaining hearts on top, butter side down. Place a 3-inch length of chive down the center of each sandwich and 2 tufts of dill on each "wing."

Serve at a Mad Tea Party!

Tea pairing

Drink Me Tea, p. 121

* Breads that come in wider loaves like oatmeal bread work well for this recipe, since it will be easier to cut two hearts from each slice.

** Use enough to put 4 tiny tufts of dill on each sandwich.

cracked china deviled eggs

from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

Makes 24 deviled eggs

"But whenever any of us are taken away our joints at once stiffen, and we can only stand straight and look pretty ... our lives are much pleasanter here in our own country." — The China Princess

I developed this recipe in honor of some of my favorite characters from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: the little china people. I love how they all have courageous spirits, despite being so delicate. The milkmaid takes no nonsense from anybody, and the jester doesn't let a few cracks stop him from doing headstands!


1 dozen eggs Gel food coloring, various colors
1 cup mayonnaise
1½ Tbsp mustard
1 tsp parsley flakes
1 tsp chives
½ tsp salt


1 Place the eggs in the bottom of a large pot. Fill with cold water until the eggs are under 2 inches of water. Place on high heat. When the water comes to a boil, remove from heat and cover for 7 minutes. Drain and allow the eggs to cool.

2 Fill 6 large mugs about â ..." full with cold water. Place the mugs on a baking sheet to avoid staining anything if there are spills. Put 3 — 4 drops gel food coloring in each mug and stir until completely dissolved.

3 When the eggs are cooled, gently crack each one in several places by tapping them against the counter and rotating as you tap. Try to create a lot of tiny cracks but not so many that the shell falls off.

4 Leaving the cracked shell in place, lower two eggs into each mug of food coloring. Put the mugs in the fridge for 7 — 12 hours.

5 Remove the eggs from the mugs and pat dry with a paper towel. Gently peel the shell from each egg, revealing the "cracked china" color effect.

6 Cut each egg in half lengthwise and set the yolk halves aside in a bowl. Set the white halves on a serving plate.

7 Mix the yolks with the mayonnaise, mustard, parsley flakes, chives, and salt. This can be done with a spoon for a coarse texture or with a hand mixer for a smooth texture. If using a spoon to mash the filling, make sure any chunks of yolk are small enough to allow for piping.

8 Spoon the filling into a piping bag fitted with a large round tip. Pipe about 1½ teaspoons of filling into each egg half.

Serve to the lively porcelain China People in Oz!

NOTE: When Easter rolls around, these eggs are a creative alternative to traditional dyed eggs. You can also use black dye to turn them into Halloween eggs.

deeper 'n ever turnip 'n tater 'n beetroot pie

from The Rogue Crew: A Tale of Redwall by Brian Jacques

Makes one 9-inch pie

"There ain't no better cook in all of Mossflower than Friar Wopple. She makes pies an' soups, an' pasties ... an' deeper 'n ever turnip 'n tater 'n beetroot pie for the moles. Best food you ever tasted ..." — Uggo

The ultimate root vegetable dish, this savory pie boasts buttery herbed crust and hearty diced vegetable filling with a flavor reminiscent of Thanksgiving stuffing. Like all the recipes eaten by the beasts of Redwall, it's naturally vegetarian ...but I won't fault you if you add some diced chicken!



1 cup chopped sweet onion
½ cup butternut squash, peeled and cubed
1 cup white turnip, peeled and cubed
1 cup parsnip, peeled and cubed
1 cup beets, peeled and cubed
1 cup carrots, peeled and cubed
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup sliced mushrooms
3 Tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper

Binding Mix

4 red potatoes
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp salt
1 Tbsp parsley flakes
1 tsp rosemary
1 room temperature egg

Pie Dough

1¼ cups flour
½ tsp salt
½ Tbsp thyme
½ Tbsp rosemary
6 Tbsp cold unsalted butter, cubed
¼ cup cold water


1 Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine all filling ingredients in a large bowl; stir until the vegetables are evenly coated with the olive oil. Line a baking sheet with tinfoil and evenly spread out the vegetables on it. Roast for 45 minutes, stirring halfway through. At the 15-minute mark, prick the red potatoes from the binding mix 4 — 5 times with a fork and place them on the baking sheet with the vegetables for the remaining cook time.

2 While you wait, make the pie dough. In a medium bowl, stir together all the pie dough ingredients except the butter and water. Cut the butter into the flour mix with a fork. Stir in water 1 tablespoon at a time with the fork until the mix holds together when pressed with fingers but isn't soggy. Gather it into a ball and flatten into a 4½-inch disk. Wrap the disk in plastic and freeze 15 — 20 minutes or until firm but not hard.

3 Roll the dough out on a floured surface until it reaches 12 inches across (if the dough is too stiff to roll, work it with your hands until it becomes pliable). Line a pie plate with the dough. Trim the edges and decorate if desired.

4 Remove the vegetables from the oven. Mash the red potatoes in a large bowl and stir in all the other binding mix ingredients. Stir the roasted vegetables into the binding mix 1 cup at a time. Pour the mix into the pie crust.

5 Bake for 15 minutes at 400°F. Turn the oven down to 350°F and bake another 25 — 30 minutes or until the crust and top of the pie begin to lightly brown.

Slice and serve warm to the wonderful beasts of Redwall!

delicious avalon apple tart

from Vita Merlini by Geoffrey of Monmouth

Makes 1 8-inch tart

"The island of apples ... gets its name from the fact that it produces all things of itself ... Of its own accord it produces grain and grapes, and apple trees grow in its woods from the close- clipped grass ..."

This savory tribute to Avalon's namesake fruit is filled with Gala apples, acorn squash, and pearl onions topped with Welsh Cheddar cheese. The rustic style and hearty flavors combine to make a side dish reminiscent of King Arthur's grand medieval feasts.


Pie Crust

1¼ cups flour
½ tsp salt
½ Tbsp thyme
½ Tbsp rosemary
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
[¼ cup cold water


12 pearl onions
3 oz Welsh or Irish white Cheddar cheese
½ Gala apple
½ lb acorn squash
1½ Tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp each salt and pepper


1 To make the pie crust, stir together the flour, salt, and herbs in a medium-sized bowl. With a fork or pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour mix until the mix has a crumb-like texture with bits of pea-sized butter throughout. With a fork, stir in water 1 tablespoon at a time until the mix just holds together when pressed with fingers (but isn't soggy).

2 Form the dough into a ball. Flatten and shape it into a 4½-inch disk. Wrap the disk in plastic and freeze 15 — 20 minutes or until firm but not hard.

3 While you wait for the dough, start on your filling. Cut the onions in half and remove the peel from the outside. Cut the cheese into 1-inch squares. Cut the apple into 8 wedges approximately ¾-inch thick. Cut the squash in half, remove seeds and pulp, and cut into 8 wedges, the same thickness as the apples. Combine all in a medium bowl and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper.

4 Preheat oven to 400°F. Roll out the dough on a floured surface until it reaches 12 inches across (if the dough is too stiff to roll, work it with your hands until it is pliable). Starting 2 inches from the edge of the dough, alternate placing slices of squash, apple, and onion in concentric circles until you reach the center of the dough. Tuck cheese squares between the slices.

5 Fold and pleat the edges of the dough over the outer edge of the filling, allowing the folds to be rough and uneven for a rustic look.

6 Bake 45 — 55 minutes until the filling is tender and the crust has begun to turn golden brown.

Serve during an Arthurian feast!


Excerpted from "A Literary Tea Party"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Alison Walsh.
Excerpted by permission of Skyhorse Publishing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

A Letter from the Author 3

Tips, Tricks, and Substitutions 5

Themed Tea Party Ideas 7

Savories 10

Apple of Life Bites The Chronicles of Narnia 13

Badger's Set Salad Bites The Borrowers 15

Big Apple Hand Pies James and the Giant Peach 17

Bread and Butterflies Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 19

Cracked China Deviled Eggs The Wonderful Wizard of Oz 21

Deeper 'n Ever Turnip'n Tater 'n Beetroot Pie Redwall 23

Delicious Avalon Apple Tart King Arthur 25

Devils on Horseback: Bacon-Wrapped Dates The Phantom of the Opera 27

Hannah's Muffs: Sweet Potato Bacon Pastries LittleWomen 29

Haycorns for Piglet Winnie-the-Pooh 31

Miss Marple's "Pocket Full of Rye" Tea Sandwiches Agatha Christie 32

Mr. and Mrs. Beaver's Ham Sandwiches The Chronicles of Narnia 35

Panther's Pasties Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 37

Phantom's Savory Apple Rose Tartlets The Phantom of the Opera 39

Poetical Egg Salad Sandwiches Anne of Green Gables 41

Scotch Eggs The Chronicles of Narnia 43

Sherlock's Steak Sandwiches Sherlock Holmes 45

Stuffed Button Mushrooms Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 46

Sword in the Stone Cheese Bites KingArthur 47

Bread & Muffins 48

Arctic Trail Coffee Muffins White Fang 51

Beorn's Honey Nut Banana Bread The Hobbit 53

Blackberry Lemon Sweet Rolls A Little Princess 55

Blood Orange Scones Sherlock Holmes 57

Hot Cross Currant Buns The Secret Garden 60

Star-Crossed Focaccia with Parmesan Chive Butter Romeo and Juliet 63

Toasted Cheese Buns Treasure Island 65

Sweets 66

Arrietty's Mini Cherry Cakes The Borrowers 69

Candied Flower Cookies The Secret Garden 71

Cyclone Cookies The Wonderful Wizard of Oz 73

Candled Nuts with Meadowcream Redwall 77

Dark Chocolate Earl Grey Lavender Truffles Sherlock Holmes 79

Delicious Death Chocolate Cake Agatha Christie 81

Dragon Scale Madeleines The Hobbit 85

Eeyore's Birthday Cake Winnie-the-Pooh 87

Fairy Dust Star Cookies Peter Pan 89

Hercule Poirots Créme de Mentine Truffles Agatha Christie 93

Jo's Gingerbread Little Women 94

Lavender Lemon Eclairs The Secret Garden 97

Lemon Turkish Delight The Chronicles of Narnia 99

Long John's Lime Cookies Treasure Island 103

Peppermint Humbugs A Christmas Carol 104

Queen of Hearts' Painted Rose Cupcakes Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 107

Romeo's Sighs and Juliet's Kisses Romeo and Juliet 109

Sara Crewe's Rose Cake A Little Princess 111

Tom Sawyer's Whitewashed Mini Jelly Doughnuts The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 115

Homemade Tea Blends 116

Abbot's Chocolate Hazelnut Tea Redwall 119

Arrietty's Cherry Tree Tea The Borrowers 119

Becky's White Peach Tea The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 119

Bilbo's Breakfast Brew The Hobbit 120

Christmas Tea with Scrooge A Christmas Carol 120

Deduction: A Sherlock Tea Sherlock Holmes 120

Drink Me Tea Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 121

Emerald City Tea The Wonderful Wizard of Oz 121

Hundred Acre Tea Winnie-the-Pooh 121

Jo's Gingerbread Tea Little Women 122

Lone Wolf Tea White Fang 122

Long John's Island Blend Treasure Island 122

Lovers' Tea Romeo and Juliet 123

Masquerade Tea The Phantom of the Opera 123

Miss Mary's Garden Blend The Secret Garden 123

Once and Future Tea King Arthur 124

Poirot's Chocolate Mate Tea Agatha Christie 124

Princess Sara's Chocolate Chai A Little Princess 124

Quoth the Raven Edgar Allen Poe 125

Raspberry Cordial Tea Anne of Green Gables 125

Second Star to the Right Peter Pan 125

Summery Peach Tea James and the Giant Peach 126

Tea with Tumnus the Chronicles of Narnia 126

Tea Alternatives 128

Autumn Harvest Cider Redwall 131

Hundred Acre Hot Chocolate Winnie-the-Pooh 133

London Fog Lattes Sherlock Holmes 135

Raspberry Cordial Anne of Green Gables 137

White Witch Hot Chocolate the Chronicles of Narnia 139

Conversion Table 140

Reference List 141

Index 143

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