Menu Ideas for Tea Party...Please!
I don't have as much time as I would like to come up with a menu for a tea party.
The party will be for elementary age girls, and the items need to be completed the day before, if possible. (I once tried assembling and cutting the sandwiches "the day of", and it was miserable.)
Any input would be greatly appreciated!!! TIA :)
For the past three years I have made the treats for our library's annual "American-girl"-style tea party. There is a great cookbook called the American Girl Partybook that has GREAT ideas and recipes. The "Jam Tarts" are wonderful, easy to make, and can be made a day or two in advance. They are a simple "thumbprint" butter cookie with a bit of raspberry jam.
Some of the other treats I've made in the past:
1. Yellow cakes made in mini-muffin pans. Finish with a swirl of cream cheese frosting and a marachino cherry half (one year I was able to finish them with johnny-jump-up flowers instead of cherries---the girls were delighted!)
2. Gingerbread cookies cut with a small "girl" cutter. These can be made several days in advance. Stored in a air-tight container they actually improve after a few days.
3. Cucumber sandwiches. Thinly slice peeled cucumbers and drain on paper towels. Spread "party bread" (the pre-packaged loaves sliced into 2" square thin slices) with a thin layer of cream cheese; top with drained cucumber slices, then sprinkle with dill weed. A single layer of these can be made a day in advance without getting soggy---cover with plastic wrap& refigerate until serving time.
4. Make up a batch of ham salad---easy on the mayo, so it's not too "wet". Drain a can of pineapple tidbits WELL and mix with cream cheese. Spread one side of Pepperidge Farm "thin" bread with a thin layer of ham salad; spread another with a thin layer of pineapple spread. Make a triple-decker sandwich: bread, ham salad, bread, pineapple spread, another slice of bread. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refigerate. The next day, unwrap, trim crusts and cut corner-to-corner into fourths. When serving, stand the triangles on a short side so the "layers" show. This is especially pretty if you can find the thin bread in the "wheat" version---use it as the middle bread, the white for the two outside pieces.
5. Pinwheel sandwiches. Mix a bit of jellied cranberry sauce with cream cheese; spread on flour tortillas. Top with sliced turkey (the pre-packaged 4" X 6" stuff is easiest to work with). Roll up tightly, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate. Next day, slice into 1/2" slices---serve so "pinwheel" shows.
Hope these ideas help!
How about cream cheese and jelly on banana bread 'fingers'. They'd keep well overnight.
Open faced English muffins toasted with cheddar cheese and cut into quarters, or English muffin pizzas. Both can be made ahead and popped into the oven, cut into halves or quarters.
Peanut butter stuffed celery sticks would be fun and crunchy.
Not traditional, but Rice Krispy squares with colored sugar for a glittery glow.
Have fun, let us know what you served!
It wouldn't be traditional, but the Magnolia Bakery cupcakes would be a hit. They're extremely easy to make, keep well for a couple of days, and you could tint the frosting cotton-candy pink. (Mini-muffin tins, if you happen to have them, would make these even more adorable, and slightly more tea-esque.)
Copies of the recipe are everyone online, and in the first Magnolia Bakery cookbook.
It's hard to keep sandwiches from either drying out or getting soggy if they're made ahead. One sort that would keep overnight if wrapped well is quick bread (date/nut, banana, etc.) with cream cheese.
Scones would be good with a pot of jam. They could be made ahead and re-heated if you like.
Any nice pound-type cake cut in dainty pieces would be good.
It's not traditional, but chocolate fondue for dipping marshmallows, pound cake squares and pieces of fruit would be a hit!
Apart from sandwiches, what about making a few items which can be pre-made the day before? I suggest:
- butter cookies (perhaps you can use fun cookie cutters to make them look cute for the children)
- pound cake with raspberry/cranberry sauce
- cheese and crackers
- assortment of fruits
- lemonade perhaps?