Another way to make the most of winter: Taking a pause with a cup of violet tea, a few raspberries and a good book. The Annual Cookbook Giveaway is just around the corner.
It’s the golden hour.
Four o’clock and the afternoon winter sun streams through the library windows. As its pale light glances off the walls, it turns warm and luminous, gilding the room with a dazzling hue.
It’s time for la pause. Time to curl up on the sofa with a good book and, today, a cup of violet-scented tea. Its old-fashioned perfume evokes the memory of a palace hotel in Lisbon, where the scent of the flower hung faintly in air, as if a marquesa had just turned the corner, trailing violets in her wake.
This is the kind of sensory escape I adore when taking a break from all things digital, including, I must confess, a foray into the odiously addictive Twitter.
And since this is la pause gourmande, there are raspberries to eat. Why? A ripe raspberry tastes, quite simply, of the flower. This “violet-like note,” says Harold McGee in On Food and Cooking, comes “from caretenoid fragments called ionones.” More than you want to know, I imagine. The flavor echoes are heavenly, though.
If the raspberries aren’t sweet enough, a sprinkle of powdered sugar will balance the acidity.
In a few days, SpiceLines will launch the 4th Annual Cookbook Giveaway. (Here's a look at last year's contest.) There are some delicious books coming your way. Another treat for making the most of winter.
Keep watching. It’s coming soon!