The party season’s best bites
You’ve stocked the cellar and planned your cocktail list – now for something to graze on. It’s time to give sausages on sticks the heave-ho-ho-ho...
SERVES FOUR TO SIX
1 tbsp pale (shiro) miso 2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp melted coconut oil 150g kale or cavolo nero 1 tbsp togarashi or furikake spice mix
Preheat the oven to 150C/130C fan/Gas 2. In a large bowl, mix the miso, rice vinegar and coconut oil together.
Remove the stems from the kale or cavolo nero and cut the leaves into 6cm pieces. Add the kale leaves to the miso mixture and massage it into the leaves.
Place the kale in a single layer on a large baking tray or two smaller ones. Sprinkle with the spice mix and bake for 20 minutes or until crisp.
Recipes from My Asian Kitchen by Jennifer Joyce (Murdoch Books, £20) 4 small raw beetroot, grated 4 tbsp red wine vinegar 4 tbsp olive oil
Cut the salmon in half across the fillet, remove any pin bones and set aside on a board, skin-side down.
Place the crushed peppercorns in a bowl with the caraway seeds, salt and sugar, then mix in the vodka.
Evenly spread the mixture on to the flesh side of the salmon, pressing it in until you have used it all.
Lay the dill evenly over the surface of the fish. Now sandwich the two pieces of salmon together, skin-side out, so that the curing sides are touching each other.
Tie with kitchen string, tucking in any filling that spills out, then wrap the fish tightly in cling film – I like to wrap it twice so that it is really secure.
Place the parcel in a dish to catch any escaping liquids and refrigerate for 48 hours. You can weight the salmon down with something heavy if you like. And, if you remember, you can turn it a couple of times, but it doesn’t really make that much difference.
To make the beetroot pickle (which can be prepared a few hours before you want to serve it), place all the ingredients in a large bowl, cover and leave for about two hours
2 large sweet potatoes, skin on 2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 garlic clove, sliced
½ tsp sea salt
1 thumb-sized jalapeño or other green chilli, sliced
1 tbsp yuzu or lime juice
Thick zest of 1 lime
Preheat the oven to 150C/130C fan/Gas 2.
Thinly slice the wellscrubbed sweet potatoes lengthways on a mandolin, about 2½mm thin. They should be thicker than you might think as they will shrink and become crisp. If they are too thin, they can burn in places before they are cooked.
Rub both sides of the crisps with the oil and place on one very large baking tray or two smaller ones. Bake for 45 minutes or until crisp. You may want to swap the two trays (if using) around halfway through the cooking time.
In the last 10 minutes or so of baking, flip over the potatoes so they dry out.
Remove the crisps from the oven, sprinkle with sea salt and leave to cool on the tray. If not eating immediately, place in a tin or sealed container and line the base with baking paper so it absorbs any moisture.
To make the creamy chilli sauce, in a mortar and pestle crush the garlic, salt, green chilli, yuzu or lime juice and lime zest until they form a paste. Scrape into a small serving bowl and add the mayonnaise and buttermilk. Stir to combine.
Serve the creamy chilli sauce with the potato crisps. in the fridge, then drain off the liquid thoroughly before serving the grated beetroot with the salmon.
Remove the salmon from the cling film and gently wipe off the excess dill and cure. Place the fish, skin-side down, on a board and scatter with a little extra dill.
Serve the salmon with the beetroot pickle on the side and slices of good rye bread.
Alternatively, assemble the canapés yourself by thinly slicing the salmon, placing it on rye bread and topping it with a little of the pickle. You could also serve it with lemon wedges instead.
Recipe from The Art of the Party by Kay Plunkett-Hogge
(Mitchell Beazley, £12.99)