them to passing travellers. Cornish Cream Tea

OF the many gifts that Cornwall has given to the world – steam technology, mining enterprise, the pasty – perhaps none is as much loved as the cream tea.

This is controversial, of course: there continue to be rumours promulgated by a barbarian race living north of the Tamar that the cream tea originated in Devon.

They suggest the tradition of eating bread with cream and jam existed at Tavistock Abbey in Devon in the 11th century.

The Abbey was established in the Polpeor Café

The most southerly café in Britain

•Outside Terrace

• Glorious Views

• Hot & cold menu


Lizard Point, The Lizard, Helston, Cornwall TR12 7NU T: 01326 290939

Tel: 01208 880164 Find us on the B3314 at St Endellion, Port Isaac • Children’s Play Area • Ride-On Tractors and Diggers • Pets’ Corner

• Breakfast • Coffee • Lunch • Sunday Roast • Cream Teas • Home-made Cakes • Celebration Cakes • Ice Cream • Home Produced Beef, Lamb and Free Range Eggs • Fresh Fruit and Veg • Local Bread & Cheeses • Gifts and Crafts

10th century, but was plundered and badly damaged by a band of marauding Vikings in 997AD.

It took a lot of hard work to restore the Abbey, and the task was undertaken by Ordulf, Earl of Devon. His father Ordgar, Earl of Devon, had been responsible for establishing the Abbey in the first place.

Ordulf was helped by local workers, and to reward them, the Benedictine monks fed them with bread, clotted cream and strawberry preserves.

The cream teas were so popular, that the monks continued to serve

That's the theory, anyway. It's clearly a load of old rubbish – what do these people know? They put cream on first, and therefore are not to be trusted.

In fact, it seems the origins are more modern: the earliest use of 'cream tea' in the sense of the great treat Cornwall has given the world that the OED can find is in 1964 in the story Picture of Millie, by Philip Maitland Hubbard: 'We just bathe and moon about and eat cream teas.'

However, The Foods of England website has discovered a newspaper cutting from The Cornishman of September 3, 1931 which uses the phrase in its modern sense and the term does appear in Mabel Quiller-Couch's 1913 novel Kitty Trenire.

Foods of England notes several advertisements from the 1880s onwards for 'Cream Tea Rolls' or 'Cream Tea Scones' and many reference in books and newspapers of that time to cream tea, but it is thought this means tea with cream in it.

In Cornwall, the cream tea was traditionally served with a 'Cornish split', a slightly sweet finger roll, rather than a scone. Splits are still used by many.

Fresh baked scones, fruity jam, silky, yellow cream with its distinctive crust and a steaming pot of tea: from such simple yet beautiful things comes the ultimate treat.

Cornwall, of course, is full of providers of this delight, from cafes providing the delicacy to online companies that can deliver it via hamper to the homesick. The individual ingredients, too, are available here of a quality not found elsewhere.

So: ignore all imitations (especially barbarian northern ones), forget all the fuss about how to pronounce the word scone and treat yourself to a cream tea - surely everybody can agree on that?

Come and sample a taste of Cornwall whilst enjoying ‘Tea for Two’

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Two for

22 Cornish Visitor Guide - Spring 2017 £12 only

* upgrade to our prre

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or just £1 offee T R E R U L E F O OT | NR SA LTA S H mail: F ree Parking | Open 7 Days a Week

Kernow Mill, on the A38, offers some of Cornwall’s finest products along with easy free parking.

In store they have the Tavarn Dewas Cornish drink shop offering samples

of Cornish Cider, wines and much more.

Take advantage of the great value tea for two offer, only £12!



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