One thing I seemed to bake a lot of over the festive period were these simple filo canapes. That, and cheese scones. Maybe I’ll do a post for them some day soon too.
In the mean time, yes, I know we’re all being badgered by the billionaire advertisers telling us to be slimmer, fitter, glowier, shinier and more glittery, but actually, if you are on a health kick, filo is a pretty great pastry and these can definitely be made to be healthier if you swap the cheese out for an alternative such as houmous, crushed avo or roast veg. Saying that, keep the cheese (unless you’re partaking in Veganuary), these require a very small amount of the good stuff to taste delicious, and a nibble of chedz every now and then isn’t going to hurt. It’s all about balance.
Given my festive blogging break, and the fact it was entirely unplanned, I was supposed to post this wayyyyyy before Chrimbo, so you lot could be inspired for all of your wonderful catering and hosting that was about to ensue.
Instead, I say we banish the January blues, invite your best bunch over, and get all fancy before dinner with these super simple filo canapes and a rather sexy gin cocktail (that may or may not be gracing this blog with it’s presence at the weekend…watch out for that one!). So for now we dine like winter kings, whip up a tray of fantastic flamboyant filo, and rejoice that we’ve found an alternative way to use up that leftover cheese and chutney!
- A couple of sheets of filo pastry (depending on how many you want to make – a little goes a long way on this recipe!)
- Your favourite English Provender chutney* – I used Caramelised Red Onion, Apple , Pear and Fig, and Hot Chilli & Red Pepper (though these were the ones they sent me, I’ve actually myself bought a pot of every single one at some point over the last couple of years!)
- Whatever leftover cheese is in the fridge, as long as it’s melty (I used cheddar, mozzarella and Stilton)
- A handful of nuts – my favourites are pecans, pine nuts, hazelnuts or walnuts for these.
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C (or the equivalent) and grab yourself a muffin tin (or as Mum used to call them, a “bun tin”)
- I was taking these to a taster at Slimming World (Yep!) so sprayed the bottom of the tin with some frylight, but you could lightly wipe over each hole with oil
- Cut your filo sheets into 4 length ways and then make squares width ways, so you have lots of little even square shapes. I find this easiest with scissors and it doesn’t have to be too precise.
- Line 2 or three squares over each other in each hole in the tin, at opposite angles so that their points are facing opposite directions and press down a little
- Scoop about 1/2 tsp of chutney into the bottom of each pastry case, followed by a small crumbling of your chosen cheese, and if you fancy it, a nut. Just one will do, you don’t want to overfill them.
- Bake in the hot oven for 5-10 minutes until golden, they really don’t need long so keep checking!
Some inspiration for flavours:
Caramelised Red Onion chutney, pecan and stilton
Pesto, pine nuts, tomato chutney and mozzarella
Chilli and Red Pepper chutney, hazelnut and cheddar
Apple, Pear and Fig chutney, walnut and brie
Morrocan Spiced chutney, houmous and roasted veg (Vegan)
The joy of these simple filo canapes is whilst they look fancy, they are so quick to make (as you can see, they’re so simple you can even convince your Dad to help!), taste great, and the options for chopping and changing the ingredients around are pretty limitless. Plus, they are delicious served warm straight from the oven, but for ease can also be made in advance if required, allowing more time for mingling.
***These chutneys were sent to me in exchange for an honest review, but all opinions and recipe ideas are my own***