Sunday, July 12, 2009

Palmiers and allumettes

If Christmas wasn't busy enough, the new year was the busiest yet - altogether a three week block of events.
After the first Saturday night of the year I then had 10 days before the next block of busy weeks. 10 days to catch up with all those other things - updating the website (refreshing all the links, adding new photos, adding new pages - like a weddings page - and deleting old ones, adding a site map which helps the search engines etc etc), catching up with all the correspondance that had built up, and looking at new menu ideas for the rest of the year (re-structuring the breakfast menu, adding a spring menu, new summer dishes, re-designing and re-pricing the barbecue menu etc).

One of the things I had thought of was adding a selection of dry snacks that people could have with pre dinner drinks as a more economical choice to canapés. Real ones. Made fresh. But at the time I had to prioritise, and this went down the list of priorities as the enquiries kept coming in.

This week the hen party we cooked for near Stroud had asked us to make cocktails with recipes and ingredients they provided, so it seemed like the perfect opportunity to try out some dry snacks from the canapés book - a staple for many canapé makers.

Palmiers - 4 flavours: Anchovy, sun dried tomato, artichoke and black olive.










Black olive (left) and anchovy (right) and sun dried tomato (far right)


There's only one problem with these - they're so nice straight from the oven there might not be any left to serve by the time you guests arrive.....










You roll your puff pastry out to a 15 x 35cm square and spread whatever topping you are using and aprinkle with parmesan. Then roll both ends tightly to meet in the middle and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes so they firm up. After brushing with egg on all the sides, you cut them into 1cm pieces (I egg washed the tops at this point too) and bake at 200 oC for 10 minutes.

I was about to make a pesto version, but at the last moment remembered there were a few nut free guests - so the pesto wouldn't have been such a good idea. I puréed some marinated artichokes instead and used that. The artichoke flavour kicked in almost after you had eaten them - like an after taste, which I liked. The anchovy ones were my favourite though.

Allumettes


Very much like the parmesan shortbread I made a couple of weeks ago - but rolled out thicker and cut in strips.










Cheese and tomato baked tortilla chips

I also tried the cheese and tomato baked tortilla chips that I'd seen on the Good Mood Food blog a few days before - hen party heaven. No photo of these yet though......

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