- Associated Press - Thursday, April 21, 2011

Throwing a watching party for the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton doesn’t have to be a royal pain.

But with the wedding scheduled for 6 a.m. East Coast time, you probably are going to find that plenty of coffee is, so to speak, your cup of tea.

Patra Wroten, who lives in the Washington area and writes about parties and other occasions on her blog, I Do Declare, has found a way to work around the inconvenient timing — a slumber party for some friends.

“We just love weddings,” she says. “It really was just a great excuse to get a group of our girlfriends together, take off work and theme a party around such an exciting wedding.”

The party will start the evening of April 28 and go right through to the April 29 festivities, with a few hours set aside for rest.

They plan to watch a tape of the marriage of the prince’s parents, Charles and Diana, eat English food such as miniature shepherd’s pies, and may just have a little drinking game — a sip for every time someone says “future princess,” for instance. And, of course, there will be fake tiaras.

For Penny Bradley, co-owner of the Lyon restaurant in New York’s Greenwich Village, throwing a wedding party took a bit of smooth-talking. Specifically, she had to persuade her partner in the restaurant, French chef Francois Latapie, to be English for a day.

He agreed, and now neighboring businesses, including the British restaurant Tea & Sympathy, are joining in. Festivities will start with a champagne breakfast and screenings of the ceremony, with reruns for later in the day.

On the menu: bacon and egg sandwiches, smoked haddock with scrambled eggs and Buck’s Fizz (mimosas to us Yanks).

Raffle tickets are being sold to benefit a local park and, with interest already high, there will likely be a silent auction.

“It’s getting quite exciting,” says Miss Bradley, who already has gotten reservations for the 6 a.m. seating.

Ready to host your own wedding watching party? Here’s our suggested menu for early-morning eats: fruit and chocolate scones, fruit Bismarcks, and bubble-and-squeak.

Classic to afternoon tea, scones are commonly baked plain or studded with currants, then accompanied with jam and clotted cream, a thick spread. You can make your version with any dried fruit, You also can add chopped nuts or chocolate chips.

Bismarcks also are known as Dutch babies and German pancakes. Though this oven pancake isn’t commonly served as a breakfast item in England, its savory counterpart, known as a Yorkshire pudding, is served for Sunday dinner with leftovers being served with jam for dessert.

And bubble-and-squeak, named for the sound it makes while it’s cooking, is a breakfast hash of sorts designed to use leftovers from the previous nights’ boiled dinners. It generally is made from shredded boiled cabbage, mashed potatoes and whatever else is around. Leftover meats could be shredded or chopped and thrown into the mixture, as well as carrots, onions and squash.

Fruit and chocolate scones

2¾ cups all-purpose flour

⅓ cup sugar

4 teaspoons baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

10 tablespoons butter, melted

1 cup heavy cream

¼ cup sour cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1½ cups dried fruit, nuts and/or chocolate bits

Coarse sugar, optional

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add the melted butter and stir until well distributed. Add the cream, sour cream and vanilla. Mix until almost combined, then add the fruit and nuts and mix.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Pat the dough into a circle about ¾ of an inch thick and 10 inches across. Cut the circle into eight wedges, then transfer each wedge to the prepared baking sheet. Refrigerate or freeze until well chilled, 15 to 30 minutes.

While the scones chill, heat the oven to 400 degrees. Sprinkle the tops of the scones with coarse sugar, if desired. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Cool before serving. Serves eight.

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