Time for Tea Sandwiches
Since my study abroad in London many, many years ago I've loved afternoon tea. I've hosted a few teas over the years and have learned to make things easier on myself by buying pastries from a bakery. But I have a small repertoire of sandwiches that I make, not only for teas but for parties as well.
Two of these sandwiches come from the Ina Garten and can be found in her first book The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. And the third comes from Alice's Tea Cup, the cookbook for the whimsical New York eatery. All three have been modified slightly but for the most part stay true to the original recipes. You'll note that cucumber and egg salad sandwiches are not part of the menu.
One fantastic tip I learned from Ina Garten is how to make sandwiches the night before and still keep the bread soft and the sandwiches fresh. After assembling the sandwiches she places them on a sheet pan and covers them with a barely damp paper towel. After that she completely seals the sheet pan in plastic wrap. It works every time.
For a recent tea friends brought macarons, I purchased a few petite pastries, and made an icebox cake. Although I usually make scones, I didn't this time so there was no cooking or baking involved at all.
These sandwiches are great for parties too when you need something a bit more substantial than crudité, chips, and dip.