Tuesday, February 19, 2008
The NASCAR Tea Party
Wait! Don't leave! Hear me out! I know, I know, "What is she THINKING?" and all that. I have a good explanation if you'll just bear with me. You see, since the first NASCAR race of the season was Sunday (and isn't it pitiful that I even know NASCAR is supposed to be in all caps?), I was prompted to go pull out some old photos from the NASCAR Tea Party I created for some guy friends (most of them co-workers) several years ago. They had been making fun of my love of tea parties, as I recall, when some of them chortled away and suggested I have a NASCAR Tea. "No problem," I said. And it wasn't.
I will say that I can count on one finger the number of times I've shopped for tea party supplies at Auto Zone. The surly man on duty did not seem nearly as amused as I when I told him I needed red shopcloths (A/K/A, "the napkins") and silvery clamps (A/K/A, "the napkin rings") for a tea party. His problem, not mine, right?
The tea selection was easy and obvious (a famous blend I shortened to simply "Earl"), but the treats were, ahem, decidedly non-traditional. I used a recipe that had appeared in our newspaper and made Buffalo Chicken Cornbread Squares as the main savory. I can see by the photo I made some sort of finger sandwich on rye bread, but I'm sorry to report that memory fails me on what sort of filling I used.
A red shop bucket, embellished with a NASCAR flag, held chips for the dip. (And no, I've never served cheese dip before or since at one of my teas.) Brownie bites and sugar cookies were decorated with black and white NASCAR M&M's. Mini wrenches served as teaspoons, and black-handled flatware from the dollar store completed this tablescape's serving pieces. The "tablecloth" was actually a bit of fabric from my friend and NASCAR fan Bob, who got it for me on a tour of duty in Iraq. On race day I dropped everything off at the home of one of the guys and ran, and I heard that a good time was had by all.
And, I'm pleased to report, never again did these guys challenge my ability to throw a tea party!