Now that I’ve had a few minutes to clear my proverbial plate, I’d like to share how to make all the yummy (and healthy) things that were set out for the kids at the recent Knights and Princesses playdate tea party menu!
The cucumber sandwiches were more for the mommies than the children, but I did see a few little ones sneak a bite when they thought no one was looking. The secret to these is to use white bread–even if all you ever buy is wheat like I do–and make sure your butter and cream cheese are at room temperature when you use them. I previously posted the recipe for these here.
The Zucchini and Pineapple muffins were a BIG hit with the kid. I think next time, I might supercharge them and throw in a handful of carrots! Use a mini-muffin pan to make them even more kid-friendly. These was adapted from a recipe in Sunset Magazine.
Zucchini and Pineapple Muffins
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tsps vanilla
2 cups coarsely grated zucchini
1 8oz can crushed pineapple, drained
3 cups all purpose flour
2 tsps baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp nutmeg
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup raisins
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixer, beat eggs, then add oil, sugar and vanilla; continue beating mixture until thick and foamy. with a spoon, stir in the zucchini and pineapple.
In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add a third of the dry ingredients to the wet at a time, stirring after each addition by hand. Add the walnuts and raisins and gently blend/
Grease and flour your pans; will make 2 loaves, 2 dozen muffins, or 4 dozen mini muffins. Bake 1 hour for a loaf, 28 minutes for a muffin, and 18 for mini muffins–but those times are approximate and according to my oven. You’ll want to do a pick test with a fork or toothpick to test the center. When it comes out clean, they’re done! Let them cool for 10 minutes before enjoying.
If you have a Hobby Lobby nearby, they carry these great little plastic punch cups that are the perfect size to serve up “tea” to the kids!
Tea Party Punch
2 liters gingerale
3/4 quart of raspberry sherbet (really you can use any flavor but rainbow)
In a large punchbowl, pour in the gingerale. Spoon the sherbet over the top. You can stir together or just let the sherbet melt on its own.
The sandwich kabobs, sadly, were not an original idea of mine. I saw them somewhere, forgot to bookmark them, but remembered the gist. This is how I made them, because everything is more fun on a stick! Also excellent for little pick eaters’ lunch boxes, as a recent feature by LAUGH loud SMILE big can attest to:
Tea Party Sandwich Kabobs
Bread cubes cut from a loaf of french bread
Thick sliced deli meat, cut in half then rolled in spirals
First, skewer the olive all the way to the end of the stick. (this will serve and as an anchor for the bread so it won’t fall off the end). Then skewer ingredients in this order: bread cube, basil leaf, cherry tomato, cheese cube(s), meat spiral, bread cube. The bread will go stale fairly quickly, so cover until ready to serve.
Confession time. Nine times out of ten, I use a bag of sugar cookie mix to make my sugar cookies. I know, I’m a cheater. I didn’t have a mix this time, so I used the sugar cookie recipe by the Decorated Cookie (one of my favorite cookie makers). WONDERFUL tutorials here on making sugar cookies. Before last year and seeing her site, I had no idea what flooding a sugar cookie was. How did I ever live?
For the icing, I use this method:
2 large egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
In a mixer, blend the egg whites and vanilla until frothy. Add the powdered sugar and beat on low speed until combined, smooth, and shiny. Turn to high and beat approximately 5 minutes until stiff and glossy. You can then pipe, or add a little water to make it thin enough to flood your cookies.
It was important that there be items on the menu that were good for little hands…there were a few in attendance! These tiny plastic cups held little servings of goldfish so the tiny knights felt included. They were so happy to sit and eat their goldfish on the floor out of their little cups! For the whole menu, just presenting food to the kids in an interesting way made it more fun to eat–even if it was healthy!