With the heat of the summer beating down, tea has taken a turn to the cold varieties. Tea parties can be done with both hot and cold tea. Just imagine close friends, the sun shining, a slight summer breeze and a cup of sweet tea to embrace the conversation. Accompanied of course by wonderful finger sandwiches and chocolate covered strawberries.

Recipes for Sweet Tea Food Pairings (photo by Janet Sanchez, all rights reserved)

Recipes for Sweet Tea Food Pairings (photo by Janet Sanchez, all rights reserved)

Shopping list:

2 loaves soft white bread
½ lb sliced ham
½ lb sliced turkey
7 oz bag Arugula
2-3 tomatoes sliced thin
4 oz mascarpone cheese
4 oz cream cheese
3 oz goat cheese
1 bottle Balsamic glaze
1 jar honey
1 can tart cherries (sub: cranberries)
16 oz strawberries
6 oz bittersweet chocolate (50-70% cocoa)
1 can sweetened condensed milk

Sandwich spreads:

Combine 4 oz mascarpone with 2 tbsp honey
Combine 3 oz goat cheese with 4 tsp balsamic glaze
Combine 4 oz cream cheese with ¼ cup of tart cherries in a food processor or with a mixer

Sandwiches:

Thinly spread mascarpone and honey mixture on 2 pieces of bread. Place a few slices of ham between the slices of bread. Cut off the crusts then cut into thirds.

Thinly spread goat cheese mixture on 2 pieces of bread. Place about ¼ cup of arugula and a few tomato slices between the bread slices. Cut off crusts then cut into thirds.

Thinly spread cream cheese and cherry mixture on 2 pieces of bread. Place a few slices of turkey between the slices of bread. Cut off the crusts then cut into thirds.

Do this for all of the bread making as many of each as you and your guests would prefer.

Chocolate dipped strawberries:

Fill a small sauce pot with water about 1 inch up the side of the pot over medium low heat. Place a metal bowl on top. Choose a metal bowl that does not touch the water when placed on top. Put the chocolate pieces in the bowl. Allow the chocolate to melt then add in 1/3 cup of the sweetened condensed milk. If the mixture is too thick thin it out with 1-2 teaspoons of milk. Once combined, leave the pot over the water but turn off the heat. Take each strawberry by the stem and swirl it around until almost completely covered. Place onto a greased baking sheet or a flexible cutting board. Place into the fridge for at least 10 minutes but not more than 4 hours.

Recipe serves 12-14 people generously.

Serve the above with the teas of your choice!

See more of Janet Sanchez’s articles here.

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