The best tea I ever went to had loads and loads of really hot buttered toast, as well as scones and a victoria sponge.
The sandwiches were exactly as you outlined above and they were great - I think the salmon was gravadlax with a nice dressing, and the ham had really nice spicy mustard and a little bit of lettuce for crunch. Egg and cress had some celery, also for crunch.
If you wanted to go really fancy, you could also have warm mini blini, each one with a dollop of creme fraiche and some lumpfish or salmon caviar on top.
Toasted fingers with pate and quince jam toasted fingers with creme st augur and smoked salmon smoked mackerel pate on crisp breads- fillets of mackerel, cream cheese, pepper and a squirt of lemon juice
Not strictly afternoon tea, but very delicious cocktail sticks with- cherry plum tomato, blob of mozzarella and a basil leaf cube of pear, coriander leaf, blob of stilton cube of beetroot, cube of feta, rocket leaf.
Thank you everyone. Really, thank you very much. I think there's about 20 people now, so all of the ideas you posted will probably make an appearance in some form or another. Geordie, thank you so much for the link to the cake stands - I managed to pick one up in Sainsbury's today.
On Monday my DH's ashes are being interred. Followed by afternoon tea. I love the distraction of 'doing' the tea to take me away from what is actually happening.
I organised a 'high tea' this week following a funeral for about a dozen people. The scones with strawberry jam and clotted cream were the most popular. I also put out some home made apricot jam. Rock cakes went down well. I decorated the sandwich plate with lettuce leaves & cucumber around the edge and quite a few people enjoyed eating this too. Endless cups of tea & I really regretted not being able to find my teapot!! A small flower arrangement on the table made it all look very attractive & I used one of the cardboard cake stands too which was very effective. I really enjoyed putting it all together and there was a lovely chatty atmosphere that lifted us all a bit from the sadness of the day.