Make Canapes like a pro this Christmas!

cucumber-canapesCome on folks, there’s no need to go to Iceland or reach for the Philadelphia this Christmas.

Canapes don’t have to be difficult, in fact with a few shop bought items you can look like a pro’ and your bite sized nibbles will taste infinitely better than anything you will buy in a foil tin ready to be “popped” in the oven.

Medjool dates

Plump soft and succulent flesh with a deep delicious caramel flavour, simply take out the pip and discard.  Wrap the date in Prosciutto and warm through for a few minutes in the oven. They must be Medjool and it must be Prociutto or Iberico Ham.  Others masquerading here will not come up to scratch and soon be rooted out by your guests.

Choux or puff balls

These can easily be bought nowadays and can take a variety of flavours. Of course you can fill them with Chantilly cream and dip them in your favourite melted chocolate, but they will also take fishy fillings. Try filling with Prawn cocktail and dusting with some bright red paprika from Extremadura. (Not the stuff that was sat on Granny’s shelf for a decade) you can even buy the prawn cocktail if you like.

Cucumber Cups

Not only gluten free, but a lovely refreshing alternative to the carby canapes so often eaten.  Cut about 1cm thick slices, scoop a little of the flesh part out of the middle and top with a variety of fillings – Broad Bean, Pea & Asparagus in a Pesto sauce or Smoked Salmon with Dill Sauce & Capers, or St Agur Mousse with Crispy Bacon.

Toppings

A ficelle is like a baguette but much thinner, easy canapés best friend. Slice to pound coin thickness and lightly grill on both sides then rub the warm bread all over with a peeled garlic clove, then add your toppings, here we like it with rare rib eye steak thinly sliced with fragrant salsa verdi and a sprig of watercress or breast of duck with blackberry confit. Goats Cheese & Balsamic Grape Bruschetta or Elderflower Dressed Broad Bean & Burrata Bruschetta.  The combinations are endless!

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