Little girls and tea parties have been going on for many, many years. What little girl didn't have a little tea set growing up? As the weather turns warmer here in Colorado Springs, if you'd like to plan a real tea party for your child and her friends, here are some ideas and tips for you.
Invitations. Handwritten invites are more personal, but a lot of work. The next best thing would be to do them on the computer with a fancy font. You want them to look elegant.
Attire. Party dresses for the young ladies, and if young gentlemen are invited, shirts and ties or vests for them. Encourage hats for the young ladies. If you have the money, you can buy a few feather boas or fancy bracelets at the thrift store or party store, and maybe some Ascots for the boys to dress up in once they arrive.
Dishes and cups. You may not want to have your best china out for the littlest guests, but you can buy plastic tea cups and saucers that look very nice. You can add on the invitation that if the child has a favorite tea cup to use, they can bring it. Clear plastic dessert plates with a doily on them is fabulous for the desserts.
Refreshments. Cucumber sandwiches come to mind when thinking of tea time. Other sandwiches can be used, too, such as peanut butter and jelly, chicken and mayonnaise, turkey and Swiss cheese. Just make sure they are small. Cut a whole sandwich into quarters, and cut the crust off so the pickiest of eaters don't leave a mess. Recipes for some finger sandwiches can be found here.
Tea Time. Depending on the ages of the guests, you can either serve real decaffeinated tea, or lemonade, or both. Earl Grey and English Breakfast are popular teas for tea parties, and they come in decaffeinated versions. You can also use green tea (just make sure it's decaffeinated) and fruit teas. You'll want to have sugar cubes for your guests to put into their tea. Have several dishes set out with cubes and smalls tongs.
Dessert. This can be as easy as sugar cookies, or as fancy as scones with lemon curd or raspberry jam. Recipe for the lemon curd will follow this article.
Activities. Again, pick activities appropriate for the age of the guests. You don't want them to be running around the house, so select games where they can be seated or with minimal movement, or keep them in a small area. Hot Potato, Musical Chairs, or dropping a clothespin into a jar are all games that can be played without running too much! If you do this before Mother's Day, perhaps you can have the guests make cards for their mothers, aunts, grandmothers, etc.
This would also be a great idea to use for Mother's Day, and invite your Mom friends with their little girls to a Mother's Day High Tea. Bon Appetit!
1/2 cup butter
1 Tbl. freshly grated lemon peel
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 cups sugar
5 egg yolks
1 whole egg.
Place butter into a metal bowl and set over simmering water in a wide saucepan. When melted, add the lemon peel, lemon juice, and sugar. Add sugar and stir until dissolved before adding other ingredients.
Using an electric mixer, beat in the egg yolks, one at a time, and the whole egg while the mixture continues to cook. Whisk until think and smooth, about 20 minutes. Mixture should be as think as any cooked pudding.
Cool. turn into jars and cover. Refrigerate until ready to use. Can be kept in the fridge for up to three weeks.