Afternoon tea is a European social tradition dating back centuries. It is believed that the Duchess of Bedford created afternoon teatime in the 1800s due to a “sinking feeling” she got midday. This practice quickly took off and hostesses invited friends to join them for a small snack, delicious tea and even better conversation.
Every Friday at Brookhaven Retreat, clients and staff gather to enjoy this social tradition. The routine of Friday tea at a specific time provides the stability that is so helpful in treating a variety of mental health disorders including bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder. This break in the day relieves stress, boosts mood and enhances interpersonal skills.
With the number of emotional and mental health benefits afternoon tea offers us, it’s no wonder this tradition has been around so long!
Here is a delicious, gluten-free recipe served at our last afternoon tea!
Gluten-free Key Lime White Chocolate Blondies
- 1 cup flour (½ coconut flour and ½ almond flour)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon key lime zest (lightly packed; roughly 1 key lime)
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup brown sugar (lightly packed)
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1.5 tablespoons key lime juice (roughly 2 key limes)
- 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
- Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
- In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt and key lime zest.
- Melt butter, transfer to a large bowl.
- Add brown sugar and mix until there are no lumps.
- Allow to cool slightly.
- Mix in egg, vanilla and lime juice, then add dry ingredients.
- Stir until just combined, then fold in white chocolate chips.
- Line a 8X8 metal pan with aluminum foil; grease with spray oil.
- Transfer batter into pan; bake for 15-20 minutes, until edges brown and begin to pull away from foil and a toothpick comes out clean.
- Allow to cool before cutting into squares.
- Drizzle with melted white chocolate if desired.
* To avoid 'sinkage', it is important to use a metal pan. If you must use a glass pan, be sure to line it with foil, and increase the baking time by approximately 5 minutes.
Research suggests that limes may have an array of health benefits as well, including weight loss, skin care, improved digestion, relief from constipation, eye care, and treatment of scurvy, piles, peptic ulcer, respiratory disorders, gout, gums, urinary disorders, and more!