If you have a cupboard of inherited, mixed not matched, china and perhaps some interesting table cloths, ( or even if you don’t) then hosting a high tea can be a great way to bring people together.
It’s relatively easy, because everything can be made ahead (much even frozen) and set out on tables before guests arrive. You can choose to serve savoury options as canapés first with a glass of bubbles, before everyone sits down for tea and sweets delicacies.
By creating a high tea at home you have lots of flexibility with the food, drinks and seating arrangements. You can cater easily for dietary preferences and plan the event so that everyone can chat and get to know more people. Also more people can afford to join in than when you book a $50 per person set menu, and where you only get to talk to those directly next to you.
Good ideas for savoury canapés in include cheese chorizo and corn muffins…..
….smoked salmon on cucumber or 1/2 scones…
Asian style frittata….
pinwheel sandwiches with smoked oyster, cumin, lemon juice and cream cheese dip ( ask the bakery to slice the bread length wise)
Pikelets with blue cheese/cream cheese dip and caramelised pear with date and walnuts.
It’s also easy to make these options gluten free is required.
Sweet options that can be made ahead include chocolate dipped strawberries….
….scones with jam and cream ( less preparation if served halved with whipped cream and jam separately)..
…mini cup cakes decorated (e.g. Lemon curd centred muffins, with lemon icing and candied lemon…
…pancake swirls with cinnamon and brown sugar and cream cheese and walnuts..
…chocolate rum balls..
…meringues with chocolate…
…chocolate caramel slice…
Mini trifles in shot glasses ( available from Home Base, Woden Westfield).
You can also accept offers of help with food preparation if you choose as things are easy to add to the table as they arrive.
Cups and saucers can be matching or miss matching. It works well with mugs and small plates too. Look out for inexpensive three tier stands at Aldi or use cardboard versions available from Home Base or Reject shops.
Trestle tables are about $34 and folding chairs about $8 each from Bunnings.