This holiday season, even if you aren’t hosting a party, there’s a solid chance you’re going to one. With end-of-year festivities comes merriment (read: Champagne and other tasty libations). All the better to soak up the booze with a few delicious canapés that’ll satiate your friends and family. These all-stars from the Plated Cookbook are a snap to put together, easy to transport (just save the final steps until you arrive!), and total crowd-pleasers.
Tuna Tartare with Soy and Cucumber
How can you embrace sensational Asian flavors without spending hours rolling homemade sushi? This tuna tartare, of course! The crunchy cucumber rounds add freshness to chopped raw tuna, which is tossed with ginger, soy, and sesame oil. Make sure to purchase the highest grade tuna possible!
INGREDIENTS (serves 6)
½ clove garlic
½-inch knob fresh ginger
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
¼ teaspoon wasabi paste
1 pound sushi-grade tuna
1 English cucumber
- Finely grate garlic and ginger on a Microplane. Transfer to a large bowl and whisk in soy sauce, sesame oil, and wasabi paste.
- Cut tuna into ⅛-inch dice. Add to the bowl with the soy mixture and gently fold to mix. Taste and season with salt as needed.
- Cut cucumber into ⅛-inch-thick rounds. Spoon tartare onto cucumber slices and serve.
Spicy Marinated Watermelon with Cotija Cheese
In this easy, breezy canapé, watermelon cubes are tossed with Mexican-inspired flavors and topped with creamy cotija cheese. When you need a simple, vegetarian option, this one is perfect: it’s not too heavy, and the savory and fruity balance is just right. Can’t find cotija? Sub in chunks of feta cheese and reduce the amount of salt on the melon.
INGREDIENTS (serves 4 to 6)
6 cups large diced watermelon
½ bunch fresh mint
8 ounces cotija cheese (not crumbled)
- Halve jalapeños lengthwise, scrape out the seeds, and finely chop.
- Halve limes and squeeze the juice into a large bowl. Add jalapeños and whisk together.
- Add watermelon, season lightly with salt, and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to marinate in the fridge for at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours.
- Finely chop mint leaves and sprinkle over watermelon. Dice the cotija into small cubes, then place atop watermelon cubes and spear with toothpicks.
We love the sweet-and-salty balance of prosciutto with fresh or dried figs, and we’re pumping up those flavors even more with the addition of honey and flaky sea salt. These delicate morsels are very easy to assemble (and transport), and make a hearty snack for a long, boozy cocktail hour. They’re a hit with kids and adults alike, and we wouldn’t dream of hosting a party without them.
INGREDIENTS (serves 6)
1 pint fresh figs, or 1 package dried
2 slices prosciutto
1 tablespoon honey
Flaky sea salt, such as Maldon
- Slice about three-fourths of the way through the figs.
- Cut prosciutto into 1-inch pieces.
- Loosely fold prosciutto and stuff into figs. Pierce with a toothpick.
- Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with sea salt before serving.
Leah Bhabha is a cookbook co-author, recipe tester, and food writer who has written for numerous publications including Food & Wine, Marie-Claire, The Guardian, and Food52. She is a recipe editor at Plated.
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