Let me start by saying that I have an exceptionally patient and loving husband. Last year, when I said I was going to start throwing tea parties, he whole-heartedly threw in his support; but I’m afraid he didn’t really know what he was getting himself into. You see, if I am the architect of these events, then he is the builder. If I am the visionary, he is the doer. When, for my spring tea, I asked him to gather and hang bundles of tree branches, he did it. When I asked him to hang and rehang a dozen tissue poms until I felt they were perfectly placed, he did it. And when I asked him to transform our dining room into a magical Moroccan tent for my summer tea…well, he did that, too.
To make the tent, we used every dark or patterned flat sheet we owned, plus some extra fabric I had laying around, to drape and swag from the ceiling. I created a table by setting an antique door with a beveled mirror on it on top of two trunks. Lanterns were hung (Please be careful with flames around fabric, y’all!), rugs were layered, and I made pillows using pillow forms and $1 designer home fabric samples from Jo-Ann Fabrics. Each pillow probably only cost about $7; which, you know, if you have ever bought pillows, is pretty inexpensive!
For this tea, I was ready to go a little outside-of-the-box (Did I just use that phrase? Yes, I did. Sigh. Oh, me). I wanted to throw an evening tea with infused cocktails and a much more adult vibe. Focus was really on atmosphere and, while I’ll say that the food and drink were delicious, I’ll admit I still have a ways to go with presentation. Baby steps, kids.
Once again I used the fabulous Paperless Post for my e-card invitations. Each design is completely editable to your desires: words, fonts, “envelopes”, and all.
This time around the courses weren’t quite so formal. Though I did plan pairings of teas and foods, I just took my cues from my guests as to when they were ready for a new dish or cocktail. The gin cocktail was so incredible that we opted to keep drinking them until the Earl Grey-infused gin was gone; which was, sadly, all too soon.
The Enchanted Bazaar Tea Menu
Moroccan Mint Tea – Gunpowder green tea and mint, traditionally prepared.
Homemade hummus with pita bread
Fruit Plate – Three varieties of grapes provided a nice color contrast and snack throughout the evening.
The Earl is Drunk – Earl Grey-infused gin cocktail adapted from this delicious recipe.
Roasted Red Pepper Hummus and Cucumbers on Pita Bread
Curried Chicken Salad Sandwich on Croissant – Yummy recipe!
Masala Chai Tea Cocktail – Chai-infused vodka cocktail.
Ricotta-stuffed Bacon-wrapped Dates – Man, you can’t go wrong with a bacon-wrapped date; and this was a great recipe. I did have a problem with almost smoking out the kitchen, so I would – at the very least – suggest running your exhaust fan.
Moroccan Orange Dessert – A palate cleanser. I think I’d skip this next time. You use orange blossom water, which is very fragrant: not a big fan.
Apple Cinnamon Sugar Bourekas – These were delicious and much enjoyed, even though we were all pretty full by this point.
It truly was an enchanting evening with fantastic friends!
And another shout out to my friend Emily for taking such stunning shots in the low light!