In a sauté pan, add all the spices and tea leaves. Cook until toasted and aromatic.
Add this to the honey and allow to slowly simmer on the lowest heat setting.
Allow the honey to infuse for 1 hour.
Strain and cool.
Cut the leeks so that they are the same size and will cook at the same rate.
Place the leeks and tea leaves onto separate sheet pans. Cook in the oven at 300ºF until charred. Allow for 3-4 hours.
The tea leaves will finish first. Allow to cool.
Once cooled, pulverize in a spice grinder with salt.
Keep dry and sealed in an airtight container at room temperature.
Sauté the leeks in butter very slowly over medium-low heat. Do not allow to brown.
Once soft, add potatoes and cream.
Cover the mix with parchment paper and allow to cook gently, until the potatoes are tender.
When the potatoes are cooked, puree the mixture in a blender. Slowly add the fontina cheese until you achieve a smooth purée.
Season with salt if needed.
Place the purée in a whipped cream canister and charge twice.
Preheat the oven to 325ºF.
Cut the feuille de brick into 1.5-inch wide strips.
Brush each strip with clarified butter.
Wrap the strips, overlapping onto itself, onto a ½-inch-thick cylinder mold.
Bake in the oven until golden brown, approximately 15 minutes.
Allow to cool and remove from the mold.
Reserve for the lentil purée.
Bring the chicken stock to a boil in a small sauce pot.
Once boiling, add the lentils and cook until soft, approximately 8-10 minutes.
Drain the lentils and reserve the stock.
Place the cooked lentils into a blender and blend until smooth, adding stock to help achieve a smooth mashed potato consistency.
Season with salt, butter and lemon juice to taste.
Place the lentil purée into a plastic piping bag and pipe into the feuille de brick cylinders just before serving.
Scrape all the fat and meat from the skin.
Rinse the skin under running water and allow to dry between paper towels.
Brush the top and bottom of the skin with clarified butter and sandwich the skin between parchment paper.
Sandwich the parchment paper between two inverted sheet trays so that the skin will remain flat while cooking.
Roast in an oven at 350ºF for about 15 minutes, rotating the pans every 5 minutes to ensure even cooking.
When the skin is brown, remove immediately and cut into the desired shapes.
The skin will crisp as it cools.
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Piece together your real-life Nutcracker fairytale and explore various ‘Gifts of Time’. Journey to Nutcracker.AfternoonTEALEAVES.com.