Cooking with The Globe Restaurant

The Globe’s tea biscuits carry more than a little Rosemont history.

November 20, 2018 | | Cooking with...

If you’ve ever nibbled a tea biscuit at The Globe Restaurant in Rosemont, you’ll know it’s light and flakey, with a touch of sweetness. You’ll know it makes an ideal accompaniment to a bowl of hearty soup, and the perfect base for a jammy tea treat. You’ll also know it takes Herculean willpower to eat just one. But you may not know that you’re eating a tangible link to the DNA of The Globe.

Longtime chef Beth Hunt prepares tea biscuits by hand daily. Photo by Pete Paterson.

Longtime chef Beth Hunt prepares tea biscuits by hand daily. Photo by Pete Paterson.

For the past three decades – minus a three-week pause we’ll explain in a moment – chef Beth Hunt has been making them using the same recipe. “I do it all by feel,” she says as she works on a wide stainless steel countertop in her newly renovated headquarters in the Rosemont Hall across the road. If it’s a cold morning in the kitchen, for instance, she’ll warm up the milk before she adds it. Using her hands to sweep and swirl the milk into a well of flour to create the dough, she’ll add a little flour if it’s too wet or milk if it’s too dry. “Just don’t overwork it.”

This is just one of the lessons Beth attributes to another baker, the late Lee Shaw, who first made these biscuits for the public as part of a Rosemont catering group in the 1970s, then at The Globe where she taught the recipe to a teenaged Beth and continued to bake part time into her 80s.

“This is still the original recipe,” says Beth, admitting she is getting teary just thinking about Lee as she cuts out the biscuits using her favourite tomato paste tin. “We spent more hours together than with anyone else in our lives.”

Two years ago this October, Beth and her business partner David McCracken sold The Globe and Rosemont Hall across the road to Janice and Earle O’Born, who already owned the Rosemont General Store on the other side of Highway 89.

After feeling like she was being “shot out of a cannon” every day for nearly 30 years – often making biscuits at 4:30 a.m. before her “real” shift started – Beth planned to take some much-needed time off. That lasted a full three weeks, until Janice asked if she’d consider coming back to bake biscuits, pies, quiches and other goodies for the three businesses.

For Janice, the tea biscuit is an iconic piece of The Globe’s history. She figures Beth has made more than a million over the years. While she’s updated the décor and menu of The Globe with head chef Jason Reiner, and renovated the hall to be wedding-ready, Janice says maintaining a sense of place is key.

Owner Janice O’Born at the counter of Rosemont General Store and Kitchen. Photo by Pete Paterson.

Owner Janice O’Born at the counter of Rosemont General Store and Kitchen. Photo by Pete Paterson.

“I want to keep what’s local,” she says. “I won’t be using USDA beef or Chinese garlic. We’ll make what’s seasonal with local ingredients.”

And local talent. Luckily for Janice, Beth has The Globe – and its tea biscuits – in her blood. “I missed it too much,” she says. “Now I get to do what I love in a place I love.”

About the Author More by Tralee Pearce

Tralee Pearce is an associate editor of In The Hills Magazine.

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