A Strawberry Tea Party

A Strawberry Tea Party
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strawberry tea partyThemed tea parties are fun to plan and attend, especially when you can use fresh ingredients and easy seasonal decorations. A strawberry themed tea party is perfect for a warm, summer afternoon. Try this simple menu that will please both your youngest and oldest guests.

Afternoon tea parties usually take place after lunch but before dinner. The food is light and dainty rather than heavy or overly rich. A good rule of thumb is to start off with a tea sandwich, followed by scones or other bread, then finish off with sweets. Tea is served throughout the entire party.

A regular sized teapot holds 6-8 cups of tea. If your tea party is large, you’ll want to keep 3-4 pots going at once, refreshing the tea bags and hot water as needed. Use three teabags per pot, or the equivalent amount of loose tea. This is a good job for teens who want to help out during the party.

The first thing you’ll want to do is buy either loose or bagged strawberry tea To serve hot for your tea party. There are many good brands you can order online or pick up at the grocery store. Bigelow has a nice strawberry tea, as well as Ahmad, Teavana and Adagio Teas. Below is a lovely iced tea you can also serve for those that wish a cold beverage.

Strawberry Iced Tea

1 pint fresh strawberries, washed, stemmed and sliced
1/2 cup granulated sugar
5 cups boiling water
1 black tea bag, any variety
1 can frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 quart chilled regular or sparkling water

In a large bowl combine the berries and sugar. Set aside. In another bowl place the tea bag and pour over the boiling water. Steep for 5 minutes, remove the tea bag and allow the tea to cool. In a glass pitcher, combine the strawberries/sugar, the cooled tea and the lemonade concentrate. Chill. Stir in the water at the last minute and serve over ice cubes in tall glasses. You can strain the strawberries out if you wish or leave them in the iced tea.

The Decorations

A strawberry themed tea party can be decorated in many ways. If you own strawberry patterned dessert plates, tea sets, or other tableware that would be lovely. You can also mix patterns using reds, pinks and greens combined with glassware or cream colored items. Use your imagination, and don’t be afraid to ask your friends and family if they have tableware to loan you for the occasion. For the centerpiece, visit your local florist and ask what they have available that would match your theme or create your own centerpiece. A pretty round platter with a crystal bowl in the middle filled with fresh strawberries and surrounded by roses in pink, yellow and white would be an elegant touch.

The following recipes can be used for the remainder of your menu. Depending on the amount of people invited you may need to double or triple recipes. For sweets I would suggest simple cookies and perhaps a platter of fresh strawberries with a light fruit dip.

Cucumber Strawberry Tea Sandwiches

14 slices thin white bread, crust removed
room temperature butter
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 tbsp. milk or cream
1 pint fresh strawberries, stemmed, cleaned and sliced
1 English cucumber, peeled and sliced thinly

In a medium bowl with a hand mixer, mix together the cream cheese and the cream. Set aside. Lightly spread each of the bread slices with butter on one side only. Spread 7 slices with an equal amount of the cream cheese mixture. On top of the cream cheese place thin slices of cucumbers next to each other, about four per slice. Next do the same with the slices of strawberry. Top each sandwich with the other slice of bread that had butter spread on it. Using a very sharp, serrated knife, cut the sandwiches into four squares. If you wish you can cut each square into a triangle as well. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Note: You can also chop the strawberries finely and mix in with the cream cheese before spreading it on the bread. This works well if you are making a lot of sandwiches.

Fresh Strawberry Muffins

1 1/2 cup fresh, cleaned, chopped strawberries
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine the strawberries and 1/2 cup of the sugar in a small bowl. Allow this to sit at room for about an hour. The strawberries will have juice after sitting. Drain the juice and set aside. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Mix the eggs, melted butter, vanilla extract and 1/4 cup sugar plus the strawberry juice in a large bowl. Add flour mixture, stirring to combine. Fold in chopped strawberries. Spoon the batter into 12 greased muffin pans. Bake for about 20 minutes until the muffins test done. You can also make these in mini muffin pans, but cook about half the time and check carefully. Serve with Strawberry Butter.

Strawberry Butter

1/4 cup fresh, cleaned strawberries, chopped
1 cup butter, softened
3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar

Mix ingredients together in a blender until smooth

About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at Harvestmoongazette.blogspot.com.


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