Whether you’re planning a bridal shower or a unique activity for your next get-together, afternoon tea is a great way to spend time with your gal pals. We spoke to UK Chef Sophie Michell who gave us tips on how to host our very own at-home afternoon tea party. Read on for great ideas including some original recipes from Michell.
Afternoon tea essentials
Based in London, England, Chef Sophie Michell certainly knows a thing or two about afternoon tea. And contrary to what some may believe of this popular English custom, afternoon tea need not be a high-brow affair. For Michell, the experience evokes feelings of nostalgia and casually spending time with loved ones. “To this day, even when I visit my grandparents’ house in Cheshire, we’ll always have biscuits and tea in the afternoon. It’s a very comforting thing to do.”
Michell admits, however, that doing afternoon tea the “old school way definitely makes it a fun and pretty event!”
Here are some suggested accessories to help make your afternoon tea a smashing success:
▪ A cake stand for placing a large-size cake such as a lemon drizzle cake or coffee cake
▪ A two- or three-lever tier stand, for placing cookies, mini pastries and sandwiches
▪ Cloth napkins
▪ Forks and spoons
▪ Serving utensils
▪ And, of course, a teapot as well as tea cups and saucers!
What to serve
In British tradition, afternoon tea is usually a light meal that is eaten between 3pm and 5pm. “It’s meant to be a bridge between lunch and supper,” says Michell. Typically loose tea is served in a teapot with milk and sugar accompanied by finger foods.
Here are three great recipes created by Michell that are perfect for an afternoon tea with your gal pals. Says Michell enthusiastically, “They’re all treats you would imagine enjoying at an afternoon tea—but with a healthy twist!”