A menu for little girls
We are having a celebration this weekend with seven little girls, ranging from 4 to 8 years old. I'm thinking along the lines of a tea partyish food. Cut out crustless sandwiches with fillings they might actually consider, and some little fruit skewers. Stemmed glasses with ribbons will be used and I am putting punch through a little plastic fountain. Was going to do a chocolate fountain, but dopeslapped myself out of that idea. Anything unique and still a little familiar to add, either foodwise or in setting the scene?
--Tiny cupcakes, baked in a mini muffin tin and iced in various colors, arranged on a multi-tiered cake stand or dessert tray
--chocolate dipped strawberries (who doesn't like choc strawberries? and if the kids turn up their noses, that's more for you!)
--oven-fried chicken tidbits (bits of boneless/skinless breast cut up, a classy nugget of sorts---if you're worried about greasy fingers serve it on a skewer)
--boiled, peeled shrimp, arranged on the rim of a glass with a little ketchup-y cocktail sauce (where I live, kids are fed seafood in utero and they all seem to love shrimp)
--pretty, cut-out cookies in a seasonal shape, perhaps with each child's name? you could also use these as placecards or a take-home favor.
Do some sort of fruit dip for the skewers, and make a few cheese skewers, too.
- You could rim the stemmed glasses in colored (pastel) sugar. Very festive.
- Also, my mom used to cut my sandwiches with cookie cutters and use two different types bread. Imagine an adorable heart and star shaped sandwiches with the top half out of white bread and the bottom out of wheat bread.
- I have a friend who did a pink puddle theme party for her little girl. Very cute. Another did a ballet theme and gave all the little girls in attendance tulle skirts to wear (easy to make and cheap at a fabric store)
Even without a chocolate fountain, you could have some fun dipping sauces for the fruit and add in marshmallows and cookies or cake, I would do a chocolate sauce, a caramel, and a strawberry syrup, but the options (and colors, if you are willing to use food coloring are limitless). If you want to cut down on shared germs, you can give each girl her own little plate or cup for all the sauces or one for each sauce.
I would suggest raw cookie dough rolled into little balls. You can make it safe just use a raw egg substitute (baking soda and water will do the trick) and they go over real well. You could fancy them up by dipping them in chocolate or shaping them etc.
I think the cookie dough idea is cute and different. I don't know how complex their tastes are, some kids will eat anything, others not so much...mini grilled cheeses could be a fail-safe. Have various cheese and bread combinations. Again, depending on their tastes, add apple slices, tomato slices, basil, avocado. You mentioned tea-party, so I'm assuming they're on the girly-side. Would a Disney princess themed occasion work? Just a thought, good luck!
Little ones tend to love dipping, so you could all sorts of baby veggies w/ ranch and italian dips. Or, if you think they might be amenable, try roasting some of the veggies first with a little olive oil and parmesan cheese, then serving at room temperature.
The reason lunchable lunches tend to be so popular is because they allow kids not only to eat with their fingers, but to use their creativity to pair whatever ingredients together they feel like at the moment.
I know it may sound unrefined, but as a kid, one of my favorite snacks/lunches/meals was sliced cheddar, sliced tomato slices covered with Italian w/ Cheese dressing.
You could try and do a few different types of cheeses to introduce to them, and if you don't feel safe letting them use toothpicks, fingers are fine. I might also consider carving out a few round loaves of bread, filling the bread bowls with a baked cheese and allowing the kids to dip the bread cubes in. Similarly, you could serve individual bread bowls filled with clam chowder.
Scones/biscuits w/ butter and jams.
For sweets, I might suggest doing a parfait bar with yogurts, granolas, cereals, and fruits and allowing the girls to create their own parfait in champagne flutes (so elegant for them). The other fun thing might be to have cupcakes and cookies unfrosted, and then let the girls decorate them as they'd like using different frostings and/or candies.
I love little girl's parties! I have tried a few things since there are just so many ideas out there and I love how you can get many things semi-prepared so you just have to do half the work but still make things look gorgeous -
Dip bananas in chocolate and freeze - put a stick in them and they are Banana Lollies!!!
Make fruit kabobs and serve with a yogurt and honey dip - yummy!
Make mini pizzas using mini-pita breads, pizza sauce, and mozzerella
Buy ready-made mini quiches from HEB or Sams Club - they are wonderful!
I love the mini sandwich idea using different colored bread - that is fun, yummy, and great looking.
My favorite little girl birthday party involved a layer cake that we got to decorate ourselves with different candies and toppings. You could use a pink frosting and then let the girls to to town. Of course, this may be "too much" for a tea party of sorts, but it is a lot of fun.
I recently was at a High Tea for a wedding shower and the place had made or bought pink bread - I suspect it was just a basic white bread with some cherry or strawberry juice added in at the dough stage (it tasted a bit sweet, but no clearly identifiable fruit flavor in particular). Something that might work if you end up doing the pink theme thing.
When my sister and I were little, my Mom used to make us dome-shaped birthday cakes decorated like fancy ball gowns and topped with just the waist-up part of a plastic doll. The dolls were designed to be used for cakes, and I believe they're still available. Oh, we ADORED our birthday cakes! *sigh*
One year, my birthday party theme was Cinderella--mind you, this was pre-Disney. Mom bought every color crepe paper in the world and we all made our own Cinderella dresses using lengths of it decorated with anything we could dream up, and tied around our little waists with a strip of crepe paper.