Bridal showers have a mixed reputation. On the one hand, we all love to celebrate the upcoming wedding and enjoy tasty treats with friends. On the other hand, we are not (with the exception of the little girl quotient) terribly excited to participate in mock-competitive games for token prizes. I was cohosting the bridal shower for my sister-in-law-to-be (now my sister!) at my house with my two other fun and stylish sisters-in-law, and we decided that a tea was just the ticket for elegance and delicious snacks. We opted to keep the games minimal and funny. It was enjoyable and - I flatter myself - a successful gathering.
I was able to try some new and exciting recipes, made in advance inasmuch as possible. Included in the new attempts was an honest to goodness croquembouche. The choux pastry puffs did puff, were simple to fill with a pastry bag, and I didn’t burn myself making the caramel “glue” while assembling. Awesome. My Martha Stewart moment came when I successfully made the caramel curls I used to decorate the top, and spun sugar around it in the traditional nest-like manner. I am convinced that we should all throw showers occasionally to have excuses to make such decadent concoctions to the delight of those we’re entertaining.
We made a lemon cake with buttercream icing, cheesecake pops, espresso fudge bars, French macaroons, Caprese skewers, deviled eggs, cranberry feta roll ups (in Helga Bread), pretzel bites with whole grain mustard dipping sauce, raspberry lemonade bars, chicken salad on mini lettuce, and fresh fruit.
I used some simple stitched scrap-paper buntings to decorate my staged house (since we had recently just accepted an offer but had not yet moved out). I loved the cake bunting. It is an item you see SO MUCH OF on Etsy, but it was a fun and festive touch. In addition to hot tea and coffee, we also offered iced tea served in canning jars with bakers twine tags and retro paper straws. Pure fun. I found a great “vintage” coffee urn at our local Kiwanis Club sale and cleaned it like the dickens to use for hot water throughout the afternoon. It was a nice find that will serve me well in future entertaining events, and has a brilliant silver retro vibe (you can sort of see it in the upper right corner of the second photo below). All the beautiful mismatchy tea cups and saucers and silverware were borrowed from friends or salvaged from local thrift establishments.
Tomorrow I will show you the tea-themed bridal shower favors…