Chicken and Celery Sandwiches _lowres

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND -- The sandwiches course at the 25th annual Tea Time fundraiser at St. Paul Lutheran Church includes, from left clockwise, Chicken and Celery, Cucumber Dill, Strawberry Cream Cheese and Apricot-Bacon.

Apricot-Bacon Sandwich Stars

Makes 8 sandwiches. Recipe is provided by Lin Falcon.

1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened

1 tbl. heavy whipping cream

2 tbls. apricot jam

1?3 cup finely chopped dried apricots

1/4 cup finely chopped cooked bacon

16 slices white sandwich bread, such as Pepperidge Farm

Additional chopped dried apricots, for garnish

1. In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, cream and jam. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add apricots and bacon, stirring to combine. Set aside.

2. Using a 31/2-inch star cutter, cut 16 stars from bread slices, discarding scraps. Using a smaller star cutter, remove and discard centers from 8 bread stars.

3. Spread cream cheese mixture onto 8 whole bread stars. Top with bread stars with centers cut out.

4. Garnish cutouts in sandwiches with additional chopped dried apricots, if desired.

To make ahead: If sandwiches are made earlier in the day, cover with damp paper towels and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Let sandwiches come to room temperature before serving, but keep them covered with damp paper towels. Garnish just before serving.