Anatomy of a Tea Luncheon – Second of Four Posts

In yesterday’s post we finished getting the physical setting for the tea luncheon ready (the garden).  Now I get to concentrate on the food prep. Two days out from the event, a good deal of the shopping and prep work was accomplished. I try to shop at least a day prior to prepping so that I don’t exhaust myself cramming too much into one day.

Last week we determined the menu, deciding to offer a multi course luncheon.  Each course is to be served as small plate sized portions.

The Tea Luncheon Menu for a Party of Eight

While guests gather, to whet their appetites: Sparkling Wine served with a Pate Choux Puff filled with Minced Deviled Ham

First Course: Soup and Sandwich – Potato Leek Soup and Asparagus & Prosciutto Finger Sandwiches

Tea pairing – Kenilworth Ceylon Tea

Second Course:  Salad and Scone – Salad of Endive, Watercress, Grapes, Bleu Cheese with Spicy Pecans with Champagne Vinaigrette and Savory Scones with Pancetta & Asiago Cheese accompanied by  Vanilla Cinnamon Butter

Tea pairing – Masala Chai or Namring 1st Flush Darjeeling

Third Course:  Sweets – 1)  Mom’s Mayo Cake as Petite Cupcakes topped with a bit of Mascarpone Cream Cheese and 2) Vanilla Cream Tart topped with Toasted Coconut  3) Oatmeal Pecan Cookies

Tea pairing – Jasmine Pearl Green Tea or Assam

Prep Schedule:  Shopped for nearly all the groceries two days prior to luncheon.

Made the tart shells, cupcakes, oatmeal cookies, pate choux puffs last night and popped them in plastic bags and froze them.  They will be ready to fill morning of the luncheon.  I love cooking after everyone has gone to bed.  The house is quiet and I find enormous satisfaction moving through my checklist.  I also just love serving food made from scratch.  None of the recipes are difficult, many I halved for this luncheon.

Getting ready...table is set, flowers in the powder room, watercress prep for the salad

Getting ready…table is set, flowers in the powder room, watercress prep for the salad


The deviled ham was prepared last night, it keeps for several days in the refrigerator and literally takes 5 minutes to prepare in a food processor.  The vanilla pastry cream too was prepared last night and is covered and chilled in the fridge.  It too is a quick item to make and is a fool proof recipe.

I am just about ready… the only thing I need to do the morning of the tea is assemble items and make the scones – which are a quick bread and take about 15 minutes to prepare.

The table is almost set, my sister is coming by in the morning to finish that piece.

I’ve set out the teas and utensils I plan on using.  As soon as I put the bubbly wine in the fridge, I am done for the night…off to bed … see you tomorrow with photos of the table setting and food assembly.


  1. Sounds and looks wonderful! And how organized (I’m jealous) 🙂

    • Thanks, it should be fun…if I am organized, I actually get to enjoy the festivities too 🙂

  2. I want to be as organized and efficient as you one day! Looking forward to the photos from today!
    Happy Tea Time! 🙂

    • I learned how to be organized from my mom. She had high tech tools….a yellow pad and pencil 🙂 I do get a nice feeling of accomplishment as I check each item off the list.

  3. Fantastic! I love the wee cakes and choux puffs, delicious!

    • Thank you… I like making petite desserts so I can try two or three types and not feel guilty 🙂