Thanksgiving Brunch and Pie Sale

We are getting ready for the brunch and pie sale tomorrow, Oct.7th, 2017. Potatoes are being peeled for pan-fries, pies are cooking, beans are baking in molasses, and the teacups are set out… We are ready for you!

The brunch plate is a great value, for only $12 you get a big dinner sausage, egg with hollandaise, baked beans, pan fries, meat roll, “Miramichi” muffin, blueberry or cranberry scone, and tea or coffee. There are also pies for sale (apple, blueberry and pumpkin), jams and preserves, knitting and fall crafts. See you tomorrow 9am to 2pm, 186 Barnettville Rd, Blackville NB.


Memories of the Old Store

The old general store in Barnettville that became Darlene's Tea House and is now part of Darlene's Vintage Cottage.

The old general store in Barnettville, NB that became Darlene’s Tea House and is now part of Darlene’s Vintage Cottage.

By Franklin & Lorraine Lebans, Barnettville

In the early years when Mr. & Mrs. British Nathaniel Underhill were running the store, they would order a puncheon of molasses, a barrel of vinegar, one of salt pork, one of corned beef and salt herring. There would be kendals of cod fish, wooden boxes of smoked digbies (digby cod), raisins and dates as well as dried apples and prunes. They also ordered 50 lb. Bags of coarse salt, 100 lb. Bags of white sugar and brown sugar, bags of oatmeal, corn meal, beans and oats (for horses).

The Underhill family in front of their store.

The Underhill family in front of their store.

All of these items would be sent up from Newcastle on the freight train, which made a trip to Fredericton every second day. There was a train siding close by their house and store, which made it very convenient for their supplies to be delivered.

They had practically everything in their store. Mrs. B.N. had a glass showcase with needles, thread, yarn, etc. She also carried yards of pretty cotton print for making aprons. In the showcase also were straight pins, hairpins and hairnets. She said no woman had the right to cook or make butter without having a hair net over her hair. She had all the items necessary for daily living in those days including yeast cakes, oil lamps, toilet soap and talcum powder.

Each family could get their supplies and pay for them at the end of the month. She kept a record of each item in a big “Bear” scribbler and it was always 100% correct. Included among their supplies were scribblers, pencils and slates as the school was close by.

An exciting thing for the children were big red suckers that sold for 1¢ each, also chewing gum which was often referred to as “boughten gum” (as opposed to spruce gum from the trees). All the various varieties of tobacco were available also as well as nails and rabbit wire at 5¢ a roll.

The old store transformed into a Tea House.

The old store transformed into a Tea House.

45-gallon drums of kerosene for oil lamps were sent down from Swims in Doaktown on the freight train’s return trip to Newcastle from Fredericton. Later on in years they carried soft drinks, root beer, ginger ale and lime rickey which sold for 5¢ a bottle.


The old store has been well cared for over the years.

They owned a lovely Guernsey cow named Bess that would come to the fence near the house each time to be milked. Mrs. B.N. milked her and made marvellous butter. She was a nice salesperson, a terrific worker and a great neighbour.

Mr. and Mrs. B.N. owned a Plymouth car for years but it always looked the same because of their loving care of it. The little store was a wonderful place to gather in the evenings to swap yarns and gather the current news. There were more logs hauled and more horses traded there than any place in the county. This all occurred in the building which later became Darlene’s Tea House.

Darlene's Vintage Cottage - dining room

The dining and living room still have the original hardwood walls and floors from the old store.

Update: The Old Store in the story above has gone through several transitions through the years. It was purchased by Darlene Jardine and moved down the Barnettville Road where it became Darlene’s Tea House. Darlene built a section onto it to add more dining space for the Tea House. Now that the Tea House is closed, that section has been turned into bedrooms and the building has once again been reborn – this time as Darlene’s Vintage Cottage.

For more information about the cottage, visit

Darlene's Vintage Cottage

An addition was later built onto the building which now serves as bedrooms for the cottage.

Bake Sale & Brunch Featuring Shredded Wheat Bread

Darlene has been busy in the kitchen! She has an assortment of pies made, blueberry pie, strawberry rhubarb, apple, and lemon pies with the filling made from scratch, and raisin pies (not canned!). There are also containers of baked beans, biscuits, molasses cookies, banana bread and shredded wheat bread. Shredded wheat bread was always a favourite at the Tea House, now you can pick up a loaf to enjoy at home!

The Brunch Plate has grown and now includes: poached egg, sausage, pancake blueberry or plain, toast, a bran muffin, pan fries and tea & coffee – $8.


Father’s Day Brunch

On Saturday, June 18, Darlene will be hosting a Father’s Day Bake Sale & Brunch at the cottage from 10am to 2pm.  Join us for pancakes, sausages, pan-fries and tea & coffee for $8.00. Assorted fruit pies, cream pies and breads will be available for sale.  Darlene’s Vintage Cottage, 186 Barnettville Rd. Tel: 506-843-7878.


Blueberry Oatmeal Muffins

blueberry-muffinsBlueberry Oatmeal Muffins

“Blueberries are one of my favourite ingredients to cook with and I love making blueberry pie, jam and muffins. I pick blueberries every summer and freeze them so I always have some on hand.“

Makes 10 to 12 muffins

1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
¾ cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
¼ cup melted butter or margarine
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup oatmeal
1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)

-Combine oats and buttermilk in a medium mixing bowl and let stand.
-Combine the first five dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, stir well.
-Add the eggs and melted margarine to the oat mixture and mix well. Add this to the dry ingredients stirring just until moistened. Do not over-mix!
-Gently fold in the blueberries.
-Line or grease 10 to 12 muffin cups and fill 2/3 full with the mixture.
-Bake at 375 F (190 C) for 20 to 25 minutes until the top springs back when lightly touched.

Tip: Buttermilk Substitute
You can sour regular milk to use in place of buttermilk. Put 1 tbsp of lemon juice in a 1 cup measuring cup. Add milk to make 1 cup. Let stand for 5 min, then stir and use in recipe.

When a recipe calls for folding in an ingredient it is to prevent the batter from becoming over mixed which can result in a tough muffin. To fold, sprinkle the blueberries over the batter. Next, cut down through the centre of the batter with a rubber spatula. Draw the spatula across the bottom and up the side of the bowl, folding the batter over the blueberries. Give the bowl a quarter turn and do it again. Repeat just until the blueberries are distributed through the batter.

darleneDarlene has had a passion for cooking her whole life. She has worked in the restaurant industry for many years including owning her own restaurant, Darlene’s Tea House in Blackville. She currently has renovated the Tea House into a rustic cottage getaway, for rent to guests in the summer ( In her spare time she volunteers at the Greater Blackville Resource Centre. She may be reached at 506-843-7878.