Sunday, December 30, 2012

My New Year's Eve Signature Canapé - A Soup Shooter

Many New Year's Eve celebrations for tomorrow evening will be home parties.  For the gatherings we go to or host, potlucking those tasty nibbles has worked well for providing variety and sharing the workload.

This year our party canapé is a Roasted Carrot and Tomato Soup Shooter. I like it because it looks festive and it is easy, easy, easy.  It suits my gluten-free friends and gives an option to meaty protein apps that are so abundant. I have soup stored in the freezer that I will reheat.  But the soup I did make was straightforward and is very flexible, depending on what you have on hand.

My shooter cups came from Ma Cuisine down in the Byward Market on Dalhousie. They labeled them as a Dipper/Sipper. I picked up a few extra before Christmas and at that time they had 36 in stock. They hold about 85 ml when full.  It is better to pour your soup into the cups, instead of ladling. Not only is is faster, it is less messy. Pour slowly though, as not to splash. Presentation is everything.

To decorate on top, I use plain yogurt, sun-dried tomatoes and sunflower shoots. All of it is prepared ahead of time so assembly is quick. Anything that helps to keep the soup hot.

For the yogurt, I want it to 'flow'. I put it in a squeeze bottle with a bit of cream and shake it together.  I find the squeeze bottle allows for greater control when decorating the soup cups and it makes the work speedy too. The yogurt should not be so thin that it 'runs' out of the squeeze bottle. Try a pattern - a star-shaped, an 'S', dots, ...

I picked up the sun-dried tomatoes at Il Negozio Nicastro Westboro at their deli counter. I brunoised them ahead of time. (Brunoise means to cut a very fine dice, technically 2 mm by 2 mm by 2 mm or less.)

For the sunflower shoots, I use the heads of the shoot for a 'bow-tie'. My favourite brand comes from Butterfly Sky Farms in Gatineau. I usually pick them up at the Herb & Spice Shop on Wellington. I de-stem the heads ahead of time and keep them in in the fridge until show time in a small sealed container with just a drop of water to keep them hydrated.

Are you planning a signature canapé for tomorrow evening? What are your preparation secrets?

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