February 16, 2011

Tea Party Sandwiches

SO many tea sandwich ideas to choose from! So what did I make for my Valentine Tea Party?
Cumin Roasted Carrot
Curried Chicken
Egg Salad
Black Forest Ham & Gruyere Cheese
Chicken & Apple

I was going to do a cucumber one, but didn't get to it. Thought a Stilton, pear, and watercress sounded good. Had sliced smoked salmon ready, which would have gone with cucumber too, but didn't do them either. Asparagus logs - rolling the bread around asparagus sounded good too. I read of a BLT too ...

The favorite was the carrot sandwich -
Start with 3-4 thick carrots, peel, cut in thirds and slice 1/8" thick. Toss with 1 3/4 tsp ground cumin, 1/2 tsp each of salt & pepper, and 2 Tb olive oil. Roast in a 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes. You want them to start caramelizing a bit.
Assembling? One bread was spread with a tapenade, the other slice with a herbed cheese. Then the carrots and some baby spinach.

2 C mixed olives (I just used the Kalamata)
1 Tb each of tarragon, chives, rosemary, thyme, and chervil (I had fresh of each except chervil, so used less of it, dried)
1/4 C sour cream
1 1/2 tsp honey (I used Agave Nectar)
pinch each of salt and pepper
Puree smooth. Refrigerate - up to a week ahead okay.

Herbed Cheese Spread
8 oz chevre (I did use chevre, but we don't like most goat products, unless fresh, so I'd make this from now on with cream cheese - we tasted the goat [Monte, Travis and me] and didn't like it.)
2 Tb cream cheese
3/4 tsp each of tarragon, chervil, chives, and thyme (all fresh, but the chervil)
pinch of salt & pepper
Process till smooth and refrigerate - up to a week ahead okay.

Sliced chicken breast with sliced grannysmith apples are another sandwich using the above herbed cheese spread. I marinaded chicken breasts for at least 24 hours, grilled them with some hickory smoke going, and Monte sliced them VERY THIN, as well as the apples.

The chicken marinade?
1/2 C of brewed green tea
3/4 C soy sauce (I always used Braggs Liquid Aminos- healthy, natural, and hardly any sodium)
1/4 C + 2 Tb  Balsamic Vinegar (why not just say 1/3 C, isn't that close?)
1/4 C fresh orange juice
1/4 C fresh lemon juice
2 minced garlic cloves
1 1/2 tsp ginger
4 tsp dark brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

I marinaded 4 large breasts. Two I used in the above sandwich with the apples. The other two I ground in my meat grinder, along with the onion and celery, which I made into chicken curry, which along with the roasted carrot, was another favorite -

Chicken Curry Sandwiches
2 large breasts
1/4 C chopped celery
1/4 C chopped onion
1/4 C apricot jam
1/4 C sour cream
1/4 C mayo
1 Tb curry powder
pinch each of salt and pepper
Like I said above, I used the marinaded and grilled chicken. I used the meat grinder cuz it would grind everything fine without me have to do any chopping. Maybe a food processor would do the job. I picked this because of the apricot jam. I thought it sounded lovely!

Another favorite was my egg salad. I'll post that recipe separate another time. I love my egg salad alone, like as a salad, rather than in a sandwich ... I just love it any way.

I read somewhere that cilantro could replace watercress when in a crunch. I bought some, and was going to use it with cream cheese and cucumbers, but never got around to making them. As I posted earlier, I made the white whole wheat and a brown whole wheat bread for the sandwiches in square (pullman) loaf pans, and Monte sliced them 1/4" thin.

(I'm posting some of the same pictures for these posts because I didn't take any more.)

Everything was ready the day before, so all my early guests (it was a valentine crafting open house tea party) helped make the sandwiches. I didn't plan it to be another craft station, but it worked out that way, and I think everyone really enjoyed it!
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