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Tuna Nicoise

It is Easter and eggs are traditional for this time of year in many cultures. So these little filled croustades are perfect as an Easter canapé. The quail eggs are bright and spring-like and very delicious and any left over could be simply served with some celery salt. The quantities are a rough guide, you can add more or less of anything, depending on taste.

Ingredients - makes 12

1 small thin piece of tuna

3 hard boiled quail eggs

3 or 4 fine green beans

2 anchovy fillets

2 or 3 black olives

2 or 3 Romaine lettuce leaves

For the dressing mix together:

3 tsp olive oil

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

Small drop of Dijon mustard

Seasoning to taste

For the croustades:

4 slices white bread

1 tbsp melted butter or olive oil


2 mini muffin tins


Quickly sear the tuna on both sides, so that it remains pink on the inside. Cool and chop into small pieces (to fill 12 croustades you will only need a very small piece of tuna. You need 3 or 4 tiny cubes per canape).

Briefly cook the green beans, so that they are just cooked but not soft. Cut the beans into small pieces to fit in the croustades.

Slice the olives in half and then cut each half into small slices.

Cut the anchovy fillets into small pieces.

Cook the quails eggs by carefully dropping them into boiling water and cooking them for 2 minutes. Then cool in cold water. When completely cool gently tap the shells and peel. (Or buy ready prepared quail eggs). Cut each cooked quail egg into 4 quarters.

Cut 12 circles of lettuce using a plain sided cutter a size smaller than the croustades.

To assemble and serve within a couple of hours: place a lettuce circle in each croustade and neatly fill with pieces of tuna, anchovy, olive, green bean and egg. Store in a cool place until required. Drizzle a few drops of dressing over and serve.

To eat several hours later: fill the lettuce circles with the salad ingredients and store in the fridge. When required, put the filled lettuce circles in the croustades, drizzle over the dressing and serve.

To make the croustades: (or buy ready made - Rahms are available in many supermarkets including Waitrose)

Cut off the crusts of the bread and, using a rolling pin, roll the slices of bread until thin (or you can also use a pasta machine here if you have one).

Cut out circles using a straight sided cutter (kitchen craft – Amazon stock them). The circles need to be slightly larger then the diameter of the mini muffin tins. I managed 3 out of each slice of bread.

Press the bread circles into the muffin tins, brush with melted butter or oil and season.

Press another identical muffin tin on top and cook at 190º for about 10 minutes until golden brown. The cooked croustades will keep for several days in an airtight container.

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