Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Grams Made Tea Party Sandwiches

 As I told you in a previous post, Grams, Katy and Bylinda hosted a tea party last weekend. When we sat down to plan the menu, we wanted to be sure we had a variety of food that would appeal to a variety of tastebuds. Add to those considerations that Grams lives in South Texas and it's already hot here. (The heat index today is around 105 degrees.) We didn't want to have to heat up the oven which in turn would heat up the house.

We decided to focus mainly on finger sandwiches, but we didn't want them to be ordinary sandwiches. We were aware that many of our guests would be young ladies who would be having their first high tea experience and we wanted it to be something special and out of the ordinary.

The first one was easy; we settled on chicken salad right away. Katy made the chicken salad, which was absolutely delicious. Here's the recipe.
Chicken Salad

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 rotisserie chicken, deboned and chopped
2 cups red seedless grapes, halved
1 cup pecan pieces

Stir mayonnaise, sour cream and lemon juice together to make a dressing. Toss dressing together with remaining ingredients and chill.
The next choice was pretty easy too. We made cream cheese, cucumber and sunflower seed sandwiches. These were my personal favorite. This sandwich was inspired by one that was served at a restaurant that used to be in the central business district of Corpus Christi. Here's how we made it.
Cream Cheese, Cucumber & Sunflower Seed Sandwiches

2 packages Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened
roasted, salted sunflower seeds
2 English cucumbers sliced very thin
1 teaspoon garlic powder

Stir the garlic powder into the cream cheese and spread on bread.  Put the sunflower seeds in a wide, shallow bowl. Dip the bread with cream cheese (face down) in the sunflower seeds. Top with one or two slices of cucumber and another slice of bread.
The restaurant where I used to eat this sandwich added alfalfa sprouts to the top of their sandwich. We opted not to include them.

We knew we wanted to offer a third kind of finger sandwich but couldn't decide what kind. We ruled out tuna salad as too ordinary. Then, after looking around on the internet for ideas here is what we came up with. Katy did the internet search and I don't know where she found the idea, although I would gladly give them credit if I knew. We made apple and cheddar sandwiches. The recipe couldn't be easier. I have to tell you that I didn't love this sandwich at first. The sharp cheddar, the strong mustard, and the apples have a very tart bite. But by the second bite, I was sold. I liked it so much that had the leftovers for lunch the next day.
Apple and Cheddar Sandwiches

Extra sharp cheddar cheese, shaved very thin
Granny Smith apples, washed, cored and sliced thin
1 teaspoon of lemon juice
Whole grain mustard

Toss the sliced apples with the lemon juice to slow down discoloration.

Then just spread a very small dab of the mustard on bread, place a little stack of cheddar cheese on top, then top it with two slices of apple.
All of these sandwiches were made on a variety of bread from Central Market in San Antonio. We used dense, whole wheat, nutty breads as well as sour dough.

In addition to the sandwiches, Bylinda made homemade brownie bites with dark chocolate chunks and chocolate icing. We served cinnamon scones which also came from Central Market. Then we added lemon bread and three flavors of cheesecake bites which came from Sam's Club.

We filled my punch bowl with unsweetened iced tea and Sonic ice. And, we offered three kinds of hot tea -- Earl Gray, Chamomile & Bavarian Wild Berry Black Tea.

There were not a lot of leftovers, so I guess they liked the food.


  1. Thinking I need to be friends with you IRL. . ..

  2. Wow! I just finished dinner but you STILL got my mouth watering with these. I can't wait to try the cucumber/sunflower seed ones. I'll be buying the ingredients when I shop Friday. Maybe for all three.

    Heat index of 105? Sheesh! Not something I could handle.

  3. Those apple and cheddar sandwiches sound awesome and I'd never heard of them before -- definitely trying those out as both Grampy and Amara LOVE cheese and apples. Thanks!