Christmas canapes

Serves: 6
Course: Hors d'oeuvre
Cooking Time: 0 hr 40 mins
  • Baba Ganoush Pitta Chips
  • Serves 6
  • 1 aubergine
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 tbsp lemon juice, to taste
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • Sea salt
  • ½ pomegranate, seeds removed
  • 4 mini pitta breads, cut into wedges
  • 2 tbsp Greek Yogurt
  • Mint leaves
  • Avocado and Salmon on rye
  • Serves 6
  • 250g smoked salmon
  • 1 avocado, perfectly ripe
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped dill
  • Dark rye bread, sliced thinly
  • Festive Goats’ Cheese Log
  • Makes 1
  • 500g soft goats cheese
  • 1 tbsp dukkah
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped chives
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • 1 tbsp nigella seeds
  • Crackers, to serve

For the Baba Ganoush – preheat the oven to 200C and cut the aubergine in half lengthways. Brush with olive oil. Place on a tray and roast till the skin is blistering and the aubergine is soft and golden brown. This can take about 40 minutes. Set aside to cool. Discard the aubergine skin and scoop the flesh into a bowl. Add the crushed garlic, a large pinch of sea salt, the cumin and a teaspoon of olive oil. Mash well together with a fork. Set aside.

Toast the pitta chips in the oven till lightly browned. To serve place a teaspoon of the baba ganoush onto each pitta, top with a little yogurt and a mint leaf. Arrange the pitta breads on a serving dish and scatter them all with the ruby red pomegranate seeds. Serve right away.

For the Avocado Toasts – mash the avocado with the lemon juice and chopped dill. Season to taste with salt. Slice the rye bread as thinly as possible. Use a small round scone cutter to make little rounds out of the bread. Place the bread discs on a baking tray and toast lightly. Remove and top with the avocado mash, a swirl of smoked salmon and a little dill. Serve right away with wedges of lemon.

For the Goats' Cheese Log – remove the soft goats' cheese from its packaging and form into a log shape. Roll tightly in cling film and place in the fridge. Lay a large A4 sized piece of cling film on your chopping board. Sprinkle the paprika, dukkah, turmeric, nigella seeds and chives in neat little lines or make your own pattern. Lay the cheese log at one end then slowly but firmly roll the log of cheese in the spices, along with the cling film so it ends up being tightly wrapped up. Keep in the fridge till ready to serve. Serve with crackers or Melba toast.

Lilly Higgins

Lilly Higgins

Lilly Higgins, a contributor to The Irish Times, is a food writer