Chocolate Cigars

This is a great recipe to make with children as it is super simple. It is also a great recipe for when you need something deliciously sweet to brighten up your day. And even better, it keeps well and freezes, so you don't have to eat them all at once. Ingredients - makes 12 approximately 2 sheet filo pastry 20g butter 30g Nutella 40g hazelnuts Icing sugar to sprinkle Method Heat oven to 180°c Melt the butter. Chop the nuts, roughly into quarters. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a sharp knife or scissors, cut the filo pastry into rectangles. Mine were about 12 x 11cms so that I cut 6 rectangles from each sheet of filo. Keep the filo covered with a damp tea towel or plastic

Chorizo Cookies

Unexpectedly, we had a friend joining us for supper and as canapés are very expected here, I had to get a move on. I found a piece of chorizo lurking in the fridge and remembered an old recipe from way back. The original recipe uses Manchego cheese, but this was thrown together pretty last minute and so the cheddar and parmesan had to be subs. They were pretty good subs though, so good in fact, that I have kept them in. As always, these cookies are easy to make and the uncooked dough can be stored in the freezer so this is a great recipe when you need to get ahead, have no time or you have a piece of chorizo taking up fridge space. Ingredients - makes about 30 biscuits 125g plain flour 1

Falafel Circles with Tahini and Tomato Salsa or Pickled Cucumber

Falafel are a Middle Eastern ‘fast food’ made of dried chickpeas and fresh herbs. The round patties are traditionally fried, but here I am not only baking them, but also making them unconventionally flat. I hope knowledgeable falafel lovers will forgive me, but the oven baking is to keep the method as simple as possible and the shape is to allow the toppings to stay put and not land on the floor. They are great as part of a canapé selection or as part of a mezze platter and as they are vegetarian, gluten free and (with a suitable yoghurt substitution) vegan too, everyone can enjoy them. Made a bit larger they can be stuffed into pitta pockets with the toppings for a tasty and healthy lunc

Cantaloupe Melon Soup with Crab

I know I often say a recipe is easy, but please trust me, this one is super easy and super impressive. It is based on a Gordon Ramsey starter that I have simplified a touch and minimised for the canapé version. The orange almost perfumed melon flesh blends perfectly with the mild flavour of the crab salad to make a delicious dish and the fact that it takes just a few minutes to put together makes this one a complete winner. Ingredients - serves 4 as a starter or fills 10-12 shot glasses for the canapé version For the melon soup: 1 large ripe Charentais melon 2 tbsp natural yoghurt 1 tbsp lime juice 1/2 tsp salt For the salad: 200g white crab meat 1 small shallot, peeled and finely chopped

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