Canape, in the strict sense, refers to a toasted or fried rectangular slice of crustless bread also termed a crouton. In the category of hors d'oeuvres, however, the term canape refers to a small open face sandwich which may be topped with an endless variety of savory food items. This canape is comprised of four parts : base, spread, main body, and garnish.
The base of Canape
The base serves as the foundation for the canape. It must be firm enough to handle with two fingers, without its topping spilling over.
Bread with a firmer consistency, such as pumpernickel, are preferred for the base since they may be used without toasting. A more delicate type of bread should be toasted, fried, or baked (dried) in the oven. This will give it the sturdier needed to act as a canape base. Bases can be cut in a variety of interesting shapes before being used, such as rectangle, square, circle, oval, crescent, diamond, or triangle.
The spread for Canape
The spread applied to the base has a three-fold purpose.
- Spread adds flavor and moisture to the canape.
- Spread acts as a glue, helping to hold all the components of the canape together. This makes it more stable and easier to eat with the fingers.
- Spread provides a fat barrier to prevent the base becoming limp and soggy from the juices of the main body.
Two primary spread for Canape
- A basic spread made up of fifty percent butter and fifty percent cream.
- Any compound butter that is suitable for the main topping of the canape being prepared.
Either type of spread should be softened sufficiently to allow easy spreading; however, they should not be melted in any form. A melted butter will soak into the base and not form a protective layer on it.
Spread can be applied to the bases individually. A faster method, if the design allows, is to spread a whole slice of uncut bread and then cut it into the desired shapes. This technique is the basis for preparation of large numbers of banquet style canapes.
Main Body of the Canape
This part of the Canape may be almost any savory food item such as sliced cold meat, meat, seafood salad, or sliced vegetable. The main body is what gives the canape its particular flavor and character. Items of food used for the main body must be cut so that each canape has a consistent size and shape.
Garnish for the Canape
A garnish of a canape adds eye appeal. It should enhance, not overshadow the main body. Garnish can be a small leaf of herb or piece of food which is in keeping with the canape as a whole.
Garnish can be applied to the canape
- The garnish should be one which can be quickly made and easily applied.
- Choose a garnish which is suitable for the main body.
- Example : Using a piping bag with a small star tip, pipe a tiny rosette of basic spread or compound butter onto the center of each Canape. Into each rosette, gently push and olive slice, capers, a leaf of chervil, or any other suitable food item. The rosette will serve to anchor the garnish in place.
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 20 min
Ready in: 35 min
Yields: 2 pax / 12 canape
- 12 pieces Cheese Crackers / salted cracker, as a base of canape
- 1/2 nos Avocado, For the avocado canape
- 1/2 nos Potato, For the avocado canape
- 1 pinch Salt, For the avocado canape
- 1 pinch Ground pepper, For the avocado canape
- as need whole Pink Peppercorns, For the avocado canape
- as need Chervil leaves, For the avocado canape
- Arrange the base on the plate or pan, where the canape will not be moved after finished made, as transferring the well-made canape may collapse it.
- Prepare the dip and sit the dip on the crackers.
- Garnish and light the canape up.
Making avocado dip
Avocado dip canape
- Remove the skin and seed of the avocado, cook and soften the potato in a hot simmering water.
- Mash the potato and avocado in a bowl, then season with salt and paper and mix them well.
- Shape the avocado dip and sit on the crackers, then garnish with whole pink pepper and chervil leaves.
Avocado dip canape
Apricot cream canape
- Mix well the cream and the apricot jam.
- Pipe the cream mixture on the cracker with a piping bag, or any shape you like.
- Garnish with salmon roe and chervil leaves.