The Greeks honoured their mothers in the festival of Cybele and the Romans in Hilaria. In the UK, Ireland and Nigeria it falls on the fourth Sunday in Lent.
This year, like last, Mother’s Day will be spent in lockdown. With restaurants and hotels still closed it will most likely mean cooking at home to treat our mums.
Afternoon tea packages with ready made scones, sandwiches and cakes have become very popular. If you’re lucky enough to live in an area where these are available, buying one would be an ideal way of supporting a local business and spoiling your mum in one fell swoop.
Alternatively you could do some homemade bakes.
My first recipe is for a simple lemon cake soaked in a lemon syrup and would be great served with some berries and cream. The cake has yoghurt and oil in it instead of butter.
I’ve used Clandeboye estate yoghurt because it’s beautifully creamy and their vanilla flavoured version works really well. The oil is Broighter Gold lemon oil – it adds an even bigger lemon hit to this recipe and a lightness of texture.
My other two recipes are for savoury afternoon tea dishes. Brioche buns are rich and indulgent and I’ve filled them with a chicken waldorf salad.
For an added bit of luxury Abernethy smoked butter is delicious in the buns. You could also fill them with smoked salmon, crab or cream cheese mixed with soft herbs.
Afternoon tea wouldn’t be the same without a scone and the recipe is for a cheese one served with a crispy bacon and scallion butter. Split the scones while warm and douse liberally with the butter.
Here’s hoping that in 2022 we’ll be enjoying Mother’s Day afternoon tea in a swanky hotel!