‘Your first question,’ Teabing declared, his tone Herculean. ‘Shall I serve you coffee or tea?’The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown
Langdon knew Teabing’s feelings about the American phenomenon of coffee. ‘Tea,’ he replied. ‘Earl Grey.’
‘Excellent. Your second question, Milk or sugar?’
Langdon hesitated. ’
Milk,’ Sophie whispered in his ear. ‘I think the English take milk.’
’Milk,’ Langdon said.
Teabing made no reply.
Wait! Langdon now recalled the bitter beverage he had been served on his last visit and realised this question was a trick. ‘Lemon!’ he declared. ‘Earl Grey with lemon.’
Anagrams. Cryptic riddles. Filled with puzzles at every twist and turn, The Da Vinci Code is a perfect theme for a book club or a movie night, giving you the chance to start your get together off with a selection of puzzles.
Personally, we prefer to hold our ‘games nights’, as a brunch. With our brain awake and coffee flowing, it’s all system’s go for a strategy game or an at-home escape room (our favourite is the ‘Exit The Room’ series by Kosmos. They include a range of puzzles and an app with instructions and atmospheric music). If you’re looking for a game specifically Da Vinci Code themed, there is a Da Vinci Code board game, although I personally haven’t tried this particular game so can’t vouch for it.
Of course, while you play, you need some food and drink to fuel you. For those deciding on a menu for brunch, these scones are inspired by the earl grey and lemon password to Sir Leigh Teabing’s estate. Earl Grey is a black tea with oil of bergamot (orange) added to it. Bergamot orange is thought to be a hybrid of lemon and bitter orange. Because of this citrus taste, lemon is recommended to enhance the flavour.
Looking for a more authentic Da Vinci Code menu from the novel? With Robert Langdon and Sophie Neveu racing to solve codes, there seems to be little time to eat in the novel, so the food list is short. However, the following food and drinks are mentioned in The Da Vinci Code.
- French escargot
- Roquefort (cheese)
- candied almonds.
The Da Vinci Code; Earl Grey and Lemon Scones
- 2 earl grey teabags
- 1/2 cup milk
- one lemon, grated and juiced (half will be used for the scones, the other half for the glaze)
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 tbsp water
- 2 cups self raising flour
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 45g softened butter
- 1 tsp baking powder
- Start by heating the milk in a mug in the microwave for about a minute until hot. Infuse the two teabags and half the lemon rind in the milk for about 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, take half the juice of the lemon and the other half of the grated lemon, and add it to a small saucepan with the 1/4 cup of white sugar and the tablespoon of water. Let simmer until reduced to a sticky glaze (about 10 minutes). Turn off the heat and let sit to cool.
- After your milk, tea and lemon is infused, mix it together with the rest of your ingredients (sugar, flour, butter and baking powder). The dough should be kneadable by hand. Dry enough to hold, but still moist enough. Roll it out about 1 inch thick, and use a round cookie cutter to cut out the circles of dough.(I actually used the bottom of a large funnel from my canning set. Anything works!)
- Butter a cookie pan and place the circles of dough with an inch or two of space between each. Bake for about 20 minutes at 150C/300F. Gluten free scones will turn out looking like this, ‘normal’ scones will fluff slightly.