Monday, 7 October 2013

Why Are The Best Things Always Bite-sized? Canapé Ideas (Part 1)

Last Friday I had my first job as my own employee. I think that makes sense anyway...

It was a canapé party for 10. The fun thing about canapés is getting them looking pretty whilst also being a little delightful mouthful that leave you wanting more. The trick is making them look good on the plate and making the plate look interesting, you need to entice people.

I decided to do 3 cold canapés and 2 hot ones at 10 bites for each person, so 20 of each item. As the start was at 7.30pm I wasn't sure if people would have arrived having eaten or would need feeding so I erred on the side of caution and went the larger number. I was on my own so it was important I could have food upstairs whilst not leaving myself too much to do for the hot ones, this meant I could be on hand to serve drinks as well. 

After much debating with Maddie on our sofa in front of the Real Housewives of New York (god bless bitchy, botoxed women on day time TV), I came up with a menu and set about ordering ingredients. 

Everything foe this came to roughly £50, so £5 a head. Not too shabby! 


 Salmon Filo parcels with a dill and lemon yoghurt dip

 Figs with goats cheese wrapped in parma ham and drizzled with honey

 Steak wraps with slow roasted tomatoes and rocket

 Mini baked potatoes with sour cream and chives

Chorizo cups filled with cherry tomatoes and burrata topped with basil.

Ill kick off with the salmon parcels. I used 2 salmon fillets, and 1 pack of filo pastry to make about 25 triangles. First you bake the salmon with some dill, lemon juice and seasoning in a little foil parcel. This really allows the flavours to penetrate the salmon. Throw it all together and wrap it up nice and tight. Bake at 200c for about 12 mins. It should come out all nice and soft like so...

Grab a couple of forks and flake, make sure you take off the skin, then leave to cool. I added a little shot of tabasco to spice it up a little. I can't actually tell you if this worked because I hate salmon and even though I did actually bring myself to try it, I cant confirm that it was good. You'd have to pay me to eat salmon, which I guess I technically was... 
(No one hated it and they were all eaten sooooo I gonna go with a win on that one) 

Grab your filo pastry. Pull out one sheet, brush with some melted butter and fold in half, then cut in half down the length ways. Put a mouthful of salmon onto a corner and start to fold. 

Once you have a neat little parcel, cut off the end. You don't have to use a whole strip of filo, it will be too much pastry, just make sure all the open sides are covered. You can usually get 2 triangles out of a strip. Make sure you brush with butter as you go as this is the 'glue' that holds it all together and makes it look all bronze and crispy. Make sure you don't go too heavy handed on this though as you don't want a greasy mess. 

When your ready pop these in the oven at 200c and bake until golden brown. As the filling is already cooked you only need to worry about it being warm, which it will be! When mine came out of the oven I just blotted them on a piece of kitchen towel to get off the grease, it will keep them crisp on the plate too. 
To make the dip simply use a plain yoghurt and mix with some finely chopped dill and a squeeze of lemon to give it that tang. Don't forget to season! 

This lovely little cooling dip means that you don't have to worry about the salmon filling being dry. 

Tasty little crunchy morsels. 

Next up is a sure fire winner. I can't take credit for these as they are actually an idea from a great friend of mine, which is why they are dubbed 'Figs A la Izbob'. I've done these a fair amount at parties and they always going down a storm. Figs are really in season at the moment as well, so they are a perfect autumn bite. The creamy goats cheese is off set perfectly by the salty parma ham and the honey just rounds off the sweetness of the figs. They can easily be turned into a starter as well if you give everyone a whole fig and bulk it out with some rocket, voila! 

Cut off the stalk and quarter the figs. 

Cut a piece of parma ham into quarters and spread some goats cheese down one side. The wrap the ham round the cheesy fig. Done. See? So simple and delish. Try to make sure you don't do one for the plate one for you, you'll need lots more figs other wise (thats why I always make sure there are a little extra, bite-sized things are just so much harder to resist). 

Arrange artfully on a plate. I've used some rocket here to make it look a bit less sparse as they aren't the worlds prettiest things. 

As a final touch get some runny honey and drizzle over the top! 

All Done! Now you just have to grab a glass of wine and join the party. Or not in my case, it would have been considered unprofessional...

Thats just a little taster. I'll give you all the rest tomorrow!! Happy munching!! 

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