I love hosting, I always have since I was little but I do realise that the idea of hosting a festive get together can leave some people cold – but I have the answer! There is zero reason to do a full dinner some tasty canapes can be perfect and as long as there is plenty of drink flowing people will have a great time! These would also be great to serve up on boxing day when everyone is stuffed and just wants some picky bits! So below are my tried and tested recipes which always get a compliment!
Cheese & Bacon Twists
- Ready Made Puff Pastry
- Streaky Bacon
- Egg (beaten for glazing)
- Open the puff pastry pack and lay it flat and brush the beaten egg all over.
- Sprinkle grated cheese over the puff, then take a rolling pin and lightly roll over with a rolling pin to make it stick together
- Sprinkle paprika over -as much or little as you want!
- Use a pizza roller (or a knife) to cut into strips – ideally the same width of the bacon strips
- Simple twist and then take a bacon rasher and twist around the pastry
- Brush on more egg and put in the oven at 180 degrees for around 20 minutes or until the pastry is puffed and golden and the bacon cooked.
These are perfect alone, with dip or if you’re feeling really decadent then a baked camembert!
- Ready Made Puff Pastry
- I pack of mushrooms – brown capped preferably
- Caerphilly Cheese (around 100g)
- Pine Nuts (50g)
- Cooked Chestnuts (100g)
- Pinch of Thyme
- Chop the mushrooms and chestnuts roughly (don’t worry about precision it will be whizzed up later)
- Fry the mushrooms and chestnuts in butter until they soften and are cooked
- Add the pine nuts and thyme and some seasoning if you wish
- Take off the heat and let cook before crumbling in the Caerphilly cheese then pop into a blender
- Whiz to a smooth paste then pop in the fridge to harden up
- Once firm put into long sausages in the puff pastry and roll up and seal the edges
- Cover in egg wash and pop in the oven at 180 degrees for around 15/20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown
Loaded Potato Skins
So, these aren’t really canapes as such but make great party food, especially if there is lots of drinking and people need something a bit more filling!
- Baking potatoes
- Olive Oil
- Sour cream (150g)
- Cream Cheese (100g)
- 1 Leek
- Cheddar (100g)
- Salt & Pepper
- Take the baking potatoes and prick with a fork, cover in olive oil and salt and bake for as long as it takes for the potatoes to be golden brown on the outside and fluffy in the middle
- When cool enough to handle, cut in half and scoop out the middle into a large bowl and use a potato masher to make it smooth
- Fry off the leak in butter until softened
- Add the sour cream, cream cheese, cheddar and seasoning and combine
- Fry off the bacon until crispy
- Scoop the filling back into the shells and top some with bacon (this way you have some veggie option and some not!) Top with some extra cheese if desired
- Put back in the oven until the cheese is bubbling and its hot through
Sticky Cranberry Glazed Pigs in Blankets
- Cranberry Jelly – ½ a jar
- Honey – 2tbps
- Wholegrain Mustard – 2tsp
- Soy Sauce – 1tsp
- Stock (only a touch!)
- Chipolata sausages
- Streaky bacon
- Cocktail sticks (for serving)
- Wrap the chipolata’s in the bacon and pop under the grill and let cook through
- Meanwhile, put the cranberry jelly, honey, mustard and soy sauce in a pan to heat through, to avoid burning keep adding drops of stock so it doesn’t burn on the bottom of the pan
- It will eventually create a sticky glaze – you can either toss the sausages in the glaze and serve that way or pop the glaze in a serving dish and your guests can dip in as they see fit!
So, those are my go to party favourites for the festive season! Give them a try – they won’t disappoint!
Until tomorrow x