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Author Notes: People say the best things come in small packages, and it’s no exception when it comes to these flavour-packed, bite-sized canapés that are perfect for a party. Garnishes will make your canapés pop, and remember, if it isn’t easily eaten with your fingers, it probably shouldn’t be a canapé. If you are not familiar with Taramosalata, I suggest you should try this creamy dip that's dairy free. Smooth and mellow with the slight tang of lemon and a pleasing taste of the sea, this dip makes a perfect canapé topper. My Mom used to make this delicate, airy, piquant and delicious dip. I remember when she used to bye carp or pike, she would always ask the fish manger to choose one that had the Roe. She would make it right away, while it was the freshest, of course we didn’t have a food processor, and the whole process was Labor of Love and not less than 1 hour a workout. Try these canapés next time you are having a cocktail party. —Kukla
For the crackers
- • 1 cup all-purpose flour
- • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
- • 4 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated
- • 4 ounces Italian Capicolla ham, diced
- • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
- • Ground black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
- For the cheese mousse:
- • 12 Spreadable Cheese Wedges (garlic& herb flavor), room temperature
- • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves plus more for garnish
- • 1/3 cup heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks
- • Radishes, turnips and cucumber thin half-moon slices
- To make the crackers: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the flour, butter, cheese, a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Process until the dough just comes together and starts to form a ball.
- Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface; add the diced ham and thyme; knead a few times to pull the dough together. Roll the dough into a log about 1- inch thick and 14-inches long. Wrap in plastic and chill at list for 1 hour. The can be made 1 day ahead.
- With a knife or dough scraper, cut the dough log into 1/4-inch rounds. Bake the crackers for 15-20 minutes, until they are light golden brown on the bottom. Let cool on the baking sheet for at least 10 minutes; then remove to a wire rack to cool to room temperature.
- To make the mousse: In a food processor, puree the cheese wedges until very smooth; transfer to a mixing bowl; fold in thyme; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Fold the whipped cream into the mousse until well blended. There should be no lumps.
- Transfer the mousse to a pastry bag fitted with a round tip. Pipe the mousse onto the crackers and garnish each with radish and cucumber slices. Arrange on a serving platter, garnish with turnip, cucumber and radish rounds, sprinkle with thyme leaves. Serve.
For the Taramosalata canapés
- • 30 slices Cocktail Rye or Pumpernickel bread, lightly toasted and cooled
- • 1 cup of the Taramosalata caviar
- • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- • 1 tablespoon fresh dill, finely chopped
- • 2 whole green onions, thinly sliced
- • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- • 1 bunch fresh radishes, very thinly sliced into rounds
- • Chives or green part of spring onions, dill sprigs and Kalamata petted olives for garnish
- In a mixing bowl combine Taramosalata, lemon zest and juice, chopped dill, green onions and pepper. Whisk until everything is incorporated and the spread is smooth. Spread 1 heaping teaspoon over the tops of cooled toasts. Arrange 3 radish slices in any pattern you like; garnish with chives and dill sprigs. Transfer to serving platter and scatter the Kalamata olives around the platter. Serve.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Radishes or Turnips