Canapés with Smoked Salmon are always on my list for entertaining. In France a canapé is a cold appetiser or hors d'oeuvre, a one or two bite morsel of deliciousness that might be offered to you at a cocktail party. For me, it translates to a plate of eye-catching temptations that are served in the kitchen before dinner with a glass of something cold and fizzy. Equally, these are great at any party or buffet or as a personal celebration. Best of all, these canapes take only a few ingredients and are really simple to make.
What are the ingredients?
A canapé is traditionally a bread or pastry base with a topping. The easiest way is to use bread and make a croustade, which is literally a crust which could be pastry or bread in origin. I have used a plain brown bread but anything pre-sliced that you normally have will work. You will need butter to set the shape of the croustades in the oven.
For the filling I have used crème fraîche, fresh dill, smoked salmon and lemon juice.
What other toppings can I use?
You can use soured cream, cream cheese, quark or fat free Greek yogurt as a base for your canapes.
For fish canapés use tinned salmon, tuna or crab well drained.Try small prawns, smoked mackerel or cured salmon too.
For a vegetarian option try sliced mushrooms and tarragon, chopped cucumber and mint or Carrot and Celeriac Remoulade.
And for meat eaters, mix cold beef with horseradish and cold chicken with tarragon. Chicken is fantastic mixed with a little garam masala and mango chutney.
What garnishes are best for canapes?
Pieces of cucumber, dill, lemon, and capers work best for fish dishes.
Try fresh herbs such as tarragon, mint, chives or coriander (cilantro).
How to make the croustades and canapés
Making the croustades is easy if you have a mini muffin pan.
Start by rolling the bread out as thin as possible then cut out 12 rounds with a plain cutter 5.5-6cm in diameter. Sometimes it's easier to get the bread really thin if you cut the crusts off first.
Melt the butter and use a pastry brush to cover both sides with butter before pushing the bread into the pan.
Bake in a preheated oven at 180 C or gas mark 5 for about 20 minutes until crisp.
In the meantime prepare the filling. Start by chopping 100g of the smoked salmon finely.
Mix the smoked salmon with the lemon juice, chopped dill and crème fraîche. Check the seasoning. You might like to add some ground black pepper.
Spoon into the croustades and garnish with a sprig of dill and the remaining salmon.
How to store
The croustades will keep in an airtight container for a few weeks or they could be bagged and frozen.
Other appetisers and canapés to try
- Ham and Cheese Palmiers
- Baked Garlic Mushrooms
- Szechuan Salt and Pepper Prawns
- Salmon and Asparagus Frittata Bites
- Quail Scotch Eggs
- Pork and Peanut Moneybags
- Quiche Lorraine
Smoked Salmon Canapes
- 50 g butter
- 4 slices brown bread
- 120 g smoked salmon
- 3 tbsp creme fraiche
- 1 tbsp fresh dill and extra for garnish
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Roll the bread and cut 12 5.5cm rounds.
- Melt the butter and coat both sides.
- Lay in the tart tins and push down.
- Bake for 20 mins at 180 C, Gas 5.
- Chop 100g of the salmon finely and mix with creme fraiche and dill.
- Fill the croustades and garnish with remaining salmon and a sprig of dill
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