Friday, 18 July 2014

Pre Dinner Snacks

I love to have people over for spur of the moment drinks or a meal. These two dishes are something that I make often for these occasions and are perfect for some last minute entertaining as all of the ingredients can be stored for a long time in the fridge/pantry or freezer. I have even used long life cream to make the dip. The Spicy Sausage requires a commercial sausage such as chorizo, kabana, cabannosi or Polish sausage. The Anchovy Dip is based on Bagna Cauda. Add a bowl of olives and a platter of chopped vegetables if you have them and time permits.

The dip is very rich and needs to be served with fresh crusty bread, vegetable pieces can also be dipped into anchovy mixture. Leftover dip can be frozen, thawed and reheated or used as a sauce on pasta with lots of chopped parsley. It is also good with barbecued lamb.

Anchovy Dip

250 g butter
300 ml container cream
4 cloves garlic, crushed
6 anchovy fillets, crushed or squashed up in to a paste
fresh parsley, lemon juice, freshly ground black pepper

Put butter, cream, garlic and anchovies in a saucepan. Simmer over low heat until mixtures reduces by a third, stirring occasionally. The idea is that dip coats the vegetables or dread.

When ready to serve add parsley a squeeze of lemon, a little pepper and pour into serving dish. It is best when hot.

I purchase a chorizo or stick of kabana fortnightly and never seem to have any trouble using it up - chopped up and into pasta sauces, as a topping for homemade pizza, into soups or sautéed and tossed with potatoes or other vegetables in much the same way as bacon.

Hot Spicy Sausage

1 or 2 lengths of cabana/cabannosi/polish sausage
tomato sauce/relish or chilli jam for dipping

Cut sausage into long diagonal slices approximately 1 cm thick.

Put on a foil or cooking parchment and cook in a very hot oven until the sausage pieces start to curl, brown and go a little crispy.

Remove from oven, drain/pat with kitchen towel to removes excess fat.

Serve hot.

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