Make Ahead

Tea with Honey and Lemon CompoundĀ Butter

February 18, 2013
3 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Makes 1 pound
Author Notes

In my humble opinion, what's a scone without a swath of butter slathered ontop, melting into each and every crevice of flavour potential? And why not add as much flavour as possible to that butter, taking your scone to brand new heights?
My Tea with Honey and Lemon Compound Butter is perfectly paired with any sweet treat you're serving at your next tea party.
The recipe I've submitted uses classic Orange Pekoe tea, but you can easily substitute with whatever your fave is (Earl Grey would be a seriously good choice!)
For an interesting change in baked goods, substitue this compound butter for regular butter.
Pinkies Up! —thefood

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: Thefood is a food-loving interior designer based in Canada.
WHAT: A rich, citrusy spread making brunch better, everywhere.
HOW: Just soften the butter, and then it's all about the add-ins.
WHY WE LOVE IT: So far, this lightly sweet, faintly herbal compound butter has revolutionized our morning toast. And our palms get a little sweaty when we think of what it could do to scones. In short: butter doesn't have to be boring. It should be this. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 pound salted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 5 orange pekoe tea bags
  • 1 teaspoon lemon rind, grated
  • 1 teaspoon orange rind, grated
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  1. Place three tea bags into a mug and cover with boiling water, allowing to steep to until very strong. Set aside for later.
  2. Open up the other 2 tea bags, and pour contents into the bowl of a mixer. (NOTE: If your tea is not a very find grind already, you will need to grind it down using a spice grinder, or a mortar and pestle).
  3. Add butter, honey, lemon rind, orange rind, and lemon juice to the bowl with the dry tea, and add three tablespoons of the strongly brewed tea and whip until all ingredients are well combined.
  4. Line a small bowl or container with plastic wrap, and scrape the butter into the plastic wrap. Seal container and allow to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, but overnight for best results. (NOTE: You can also make a free form log of compound butter by laying a large piece of plastic wrap onto a flat surface and spooning butter into a log shape then rolling and tightening the ends to form a tight log.)
  5. If using as a spread or in place of butter in a recipe, remove from fridge and allow to cool to room temperature prior to using. If you are serving on warm items, a "pat' of butter can be sliced from the form/log.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Miss_Karen
  • darksideofthespoon
  • EmilyNunn
  • EatArt

35 Reviews

Miss_Karen April 30, 2018
I think this would be amazing in London Fog Cookies. I would use Earl Grey tea...
darksideofthespoon December 4, 2013
I'm most certainly making this for christmas gifts this year. YUM!
MomofChef November 6, 2013
Making this now. For those of you who brew loose leaf tea (the best way), there is about 1 teaspoon (just shy) in a tea bag but my loose leaf tea is coarser so needs a run through a grinder. I took a bag apart of cheap tea because I wanted to use some of my wonderful loose leaf Dilmah Earl Grey Tea in this recipe and now I know (and so do you). Can't wait for toast in the morning.
MomofChef November 6, 2013
Also added 1/2 t salt to the tea since I didn't have salted butter. August 29, 2013
I was looking for a creative use for tea. Thank-you, for this!! I can't wait to try it :)
EmilyNunn March 31, 2013
Congrats on this. So inventive. And, it's butter. Yay!
EatArt March 14, 2013
Perfect for high tea! Super creative and delish. But it makes 1 lb not 1/2lb as the recipes indicates (it uses two 1/2 lbs of butter together). That's ok though -- it freezes so you can enjoy it even longer. :)
thefood March 14, 2013
i've asked the editors to change that in the recipe, as once it became a finalize it i could no longer edit it on my own. thanks for the reminder though!
sel E. March 13, 2013
looks amazing! will try this pronto. how long does it keep though?
LeBec F. March 13, 2013
forEVer, but if you're concerned, just freeze it!
thefood March 13, 2013
i made the version in the photo above the day i submitted the recipe and it's still in my fridge without any issues. so, i'd say it will keep quite a long time - however as le bec fin says, i'm sure it would freeze well too.
sel E. March 13, 2013
Yay congrats thefood! Can't wait to make it this weekend. Thanks for the freezing tip.
LeBec F. March 12, 2013
While I am continually excited by the number of talented chefs on 52, it is very rare to see a recipe as innovative as this one. It takes a number of counts of 'thinking outside the box' to come up with adding tea concentrate AND ground tea leaves- to a compound butter. Were you inspired by another recipe or did this all come to 'you at your most creative'? What it has inspred me to think about- is partially mentioned in your closing comments>>What about replacing plain butter with a tea butter in a cake (or pastry)recipe...AND in a Swiss or Italian buttercream?!!! I use espresso powder in sweets aLOT , both becaue I love the flavor and because it helps counter the too-sweet aspect of many desserts.For this contest, i was pretty much focused on Green Tea in desserts (for the same reasons as espresso), but now I think it's time I experimented with black teas in some of the same ways!
Thai tea, Lychee, Jasmine- here i come!

thx so much for the inspiration, and congrats on your skills with conceptual blockbusting :-}
thefood March 13, 2013
thank you for your comment le bec fin! to answer your question, i knew that i wanted to make something unique for this contest, and i partially thought i was crazy when i came up with the idea of compound butter. i ran it past my partner (who is a chef) and she said i wasn't crazy! at first i only added the ground tea, but adding the deeply steeped tea took the butter over the edge. i still have some butter leftover and have plans to turn it into a cake or biscuits tonight!
LeBec F. March 13, 2013
would really appreciate your posting your results, as they will certainly help me when i sashay into this experiment!
thefood March 13, 2013
meganvt01 March 11, 2013
This looks spectacular. And I recognize those little crisps you have in your picture :) love those. I can't wait to make this this weekend. Well done.
thefood March 13, 2013
i can't get those crisps where i live unfortunately :( a family member sends them evertime someone visits her! soooo delish!
phoebe's P. March 10, 2013
this was amazing! served it for dinner guests and they adored it with the mini biscuits ... so glad there was a tad bit left for me... breakfast can't come soon enough!
thefood March 11, 2013
so glad you liked it!
BoulderGalinTokyo March 9, 2013
Congratulations, These butters can really be wonderful-I like your combinations. I did one for persimmons. But I didn't have such a great closing line. Pinkies up!
thefood March 11, 2013
mmmm persimmons
fiveandspice March 8, 2013
Congratulations! This looks so delicious, and definitely perfect to slather on warm scones!
thefood March 11, 2013
Kitchen B. March 8, 2013
Loved this from the start, tested it and am thrilled to see it in the finals - it is absolutely delicious. Very well done!
thefood March 8, 2013
thanks for testing it and for the nice words!
drbabs March 7, 2013
Congratulations, thefood! I have a question for you about the amount. You say to use 1/2 pound of salted butter and 1/2 pound of unsalted butter. Wouldn't that equal a pound, not a half pound? Thanks.
thefood March 8, 2013
you are totally right! i will have to figure out how to edit that now...
Kitchen B. March 13, 2013
Send a note to the editors and they can update it for you.
thefood March 13, 2013
thanks - will do right away!
gingerroot March 7, 2013
Congratulations on being a finalist! What a lovely and clever way to elevate offerings at tea time (or any time, really!).
thefood March 7, 2013
oh my goodness!! wildcard last week and finalist that week i am BEYOND elated!!!!!
creamtea March 7, 2013
congratulations on becoming a finalist! It looks delicious.
Kitchen B. February 19, 2013
Gorgeous photo - delicious sounding flavours!
thefood February 19, 2013
Why thank you!