Makes: About 60 cubes
These moreish little cheese parcels are ideal to hand around as canapés at Christmas.
These canapés are sure to be a hit: cubes of bread drenched in a mixture of Comté and cream cheese with a hint of Dijon mustard, then baked until crisp and bubbling. They simply melt in the mouth and your guests will devour them. And one of the best things about them is that you make them in advance and freeze them, simply popping them in the oven when you’re ready to serve them, making them the most effortless party food ever!
- 170g butter
- 170g 12-14 month aged Comté
- 100g cream cheese
- 3 egg whites
- 1 white loaf of bread (not fresh – it needs to be at least a day old), crusts cut off
1Cut bread into cubes about 2.5cm in size – you want evenly-sized cubes of fluffy, crustless bread*.
2In a saucepan, melt the butter, Comté and cream cheese over a low-medium heat, whilst gently stirring to mix together. Remove the pan from the heat, season with salt and black pepper (the cheese makes it quite salty already, but the egg whites will dilute the flavour).
3Whisk the egg whites until they are stiff and fold them into the cooled cheese mix.
4Dip the cubes of bread into the mixture, ensuring all sides are well coated.
5Place onto baking trays lined with baking parchment or silicone sheets, ensuring the cubes aren’t touching one another, and freeze (if using baking parchment, only do one layer per baking sheet or they will stick to the paper). Once frozen, store the cubes in a sealed bag in the freezer.
6Preheat your oven to 180℃ fan / 200℃ normal, lay the frozen cubes onto lined baking trays (make sure to leave spaces between them) and cook for 10 to 15 minutes (check they aren’t burning).
7Serve immediately, but ensure they’re cool enough to pick up with your fingers before eating!
You’ll be left with extra cubes, offcuts and crumbs – I spread these out on a baking sheet and put them in the oven at 150℃ fan / 170℃ normal for about 15 minutes to crisp them. Let them cool and then blitz them in a food processor to make breadcrumbs, which I then store in an airtight container for up to two weeks.
Recipe by Laura Pope, reproduced by kind permission. For more on Comté, visit www.comtecheese.co.uk.