There are so many places around my way offering Royal High Teas this week to help celebrate the Royal Wedding. I am going to stay home and watch it in the comfort of my own home while wearing my jammies. It will be quite early. I should have a good British style breakfast but I thought dainty sandwiches would be easier to digest so early in the day, plus I can make them the night before and pull them out when Daelyn and I get hungry.
Before we talk Tea Sandwiches, we must talk about the four items that make tea sandwiches a success.
1. Thin, fresh bread.
2. Fillings done right. Not too soggy.
3. Buttering the inside of each piece of bread.
4. Proper storage of tea sandwiches.
Firstly, for a nice and proper tea sandwich, the bread must be fresh, moist, and thin. Fresh and moist are easy, you can either make it or purchase your favorite brand but thin is another story. To get thin bread, you can purchase it already sliced very thin or you can cut it yourself using a Slice-a-Slice if you are lucky enough to find one on Ebay or your grandmother’s attic. But another easy way is to roll over it a few times with your rolling pin or a wine bottle just enough to deflate it a bit.
Secondly, for a Cucumber Tea Sandwiches to be right, you have to drain the cukes by laying them on a few layers of paper towels or tea towels and sprinkling them with a few pinches of salt. You do not want the fillings to be super soggy, or your sandwiches will be soggy.
And lastly. Store the tea sandwiches in an air-tight container between layers of damp paper towels. Store the sandwiches in your refrigerator until ready to use. I like my tea sandwiches to be made ahead of time so that the flavors marry well. I have even made them the night before and they are perfect for tea the next day. I like my tea sandwiches served chilled but you may serve them at room temperature if you would like, but make sure to keep them sealed up until ready to eat.
Cucumber Tea Sandwiches
1 English or seedless cucumber peeled and thinly sliced
4 ounces cream cheese
1/2 stick of unsalted soft butter
1/2 tsp dill weed
14 slices very thin, fresh bread
Drain the cukes by laying them on a few layers of paper towels or tea towels and sprinkling them with a few pinches of salt. Let set about 30 minutes and pat the tops with another towel. Meanwhile mix the cream cheese with the dill weed and add a bit of salt and pepper to taste. Spread one side of each piece of bread with a thin layer of butter then with a layer of the cream cheese mixture. Top one of the slices with the cucumber slices, all slightly overlapping and top with the other piece of bread. Cut the crusts off using a gentle sawing motion with a bread knife. Cut in half or fourths depending on the size sandwich desired.
When planning a tea and trying to figure out how many sandwich halves per person, I have seen numbers all over the place. Of course it will depend on the variety of sandwiches offered, the amount of other dishes served, and the time of day. I have usually gone with 6 halves per person. That sounds like a lot but depending on the size of your bread, the sandwiches can be quite small and I would rather have leftovers than run out.
Yesterday’s Post: Royal Engagement Ring Bubbly
These little sandwiches are also perfect for bridal and baby showers!
Tomorrow for Royal Wedding Week in BRK: Egg Salad Sandwiches fit for a Queen!