When there’s wind and cold outside, it’s a good time for a tea party inside.
But then, anytime is a good time for a tea party for chef Lindsey Joy Smith. She should know, she attended culinary school in Scotland.
Smith, who recently moved with her family to the Palouse, will be teaching how to make petit fours — bite-sized baked goods and appetizers — at a Saturday class at Artisans at the Dahmen Barn. Class members will make blueberry-lemon scones, sticky toffee fairy cakes, bacon-feta quiche, tea sandwiches, fresh butter and sugared cranberries, and then sit down to tea together.
Smith shared the following about herself, her work and tea party essentials:
Hometown: Tucson, Ariz.
Culinary training: Edinburgh New Town Cookery School
Current culinary work: Owner of The Chipper Chef, Culinary Club Advisor at Lincoln Middle School in Pullman. I’m an author, I teach cookery classes, do television demonstrations and MC culinary events.
Past culinary projects: I was the food editor for The Community Orange magazine in Utah and wrote a situational humor book titled “FEAST.” I’ve competed and placed in culinary competitions, started a neighborhood culinary competition club that has met for more than 10 years, and overseen the food preparatin for various charity events.
Ingredients and flavors that you specialize in: High fat, high calorie, high flavor, high fun. French trained.
Favorite meal to prepare at home: Fettuccine Alfredo with grilled chicken and bruschetta.
Most difficult item you’ve ever attempted to make: Soufflés are an act of God. Sometimes they work, and sometimes they almost work.
Advice for home chefs: Go for it. Our bodies are made to eat several times a day, so if you make something terrible, you’ll only have to wait a few hours to redeem yourself.
Trick of the trade you use the most: Use fresh, delicious ingredients. It’s a waste of time and food attempting to make something gross into something palatable.
Ingredient used most often: I love butter. I would rather run out of toilet paper than butter.
If you could only use five tools from your kitchen, they would be: Henckel butcher’s knife, Kitchen-Aid mixer, cast iron skillet, thick-bottomed pot and my llama apron.
Favorite specialized kitchen tool: One of my sons made me the most beautiful cutting board I’ve ever seen.
New ingredients you’re playing with right now: Sausage and apples are a favorite couple of mine.
Tell us more about one of your primary cooking ingredients — humor: Every once in a while, things are not going to go as planned. The cookies will burn, the jello won’t set or the bread won’t rise. With this in mind, I find it essential to add a sense of humor to any culinary endeavor.
How culinary training in Scotland influenced your tea party foods and techniques: In Edinburgh, a tea party isn’t just an event, it’s a way of life. It’s an attitude of hospitality, friendship and generosity. A tea party mindset means that the kettle is always on, biscuits and cake are ready to be served, and your door is always open. When you offer someone a cup of tea, you aren’t just inviting them to warm up; you’re inviting them to open up, to spend time with you, to make some memories. My studies at Edinburgh New Town Cookery School taught me the basics in French cuisine (sauces, pastries, breads) and taught me patience: Scottish accents pronouncing French terms is no walk in the park.
One misconception people have about tea party foods: Some people fear that they have to spend loads of time to create a fabulous tea party, but that’s rubbish. All you need are some well-chosen recipes, fresh, delicious ingredients and a friend to share it with.
Favorite tea party food: Sticky Toffee Fairy Cakes hail straight from heaven on a white fluffy cloud.
Advice for Americans regarding tea parties: Throw tea parties. Throw them often. Throw them for best friends, new friends or someone who could use a friend.
IF YOU GO
WHAT: English Tea Party on the Palouse
WHEN: 10 a.m. Saturday
WHERE: Artisans at the Dahmen Barn, 419 N. Parkway, Uniontown
COST: $50; registration is available today at www.artisanbarn.org or after today by calling (509) 229-3414