Wednesday, May 12, 2010

This caterer's secret weapon a $3 bag of chips*.

Ginger and Jalapeno Tartare on Tortilla Chips

The tuna part is cribbed from the marvelous Boulevard Cookbook, by Nancy Oakes and Pamela Mazzola. The tortilla chip part is my invention.  Serves 10-12 as a passed appetizer. 

4 jalapeno peppers, seeded, deribbed, and finely minced
3 Tbs. finely diced ginger
3 Tbs. finely diced chives
½ c plus 1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbs. Thai sweet chili sauce
3 Tbs. soy sauce
3 Tbs. rice wine vinegar
1 lb. of sushi quality ahi, cut into ¼ inch dice
about 30-40 wide tortilla chips

You can prep the peppers, ginger and chives ahead of time, and store separately.  Combine olive oil, chili sauce, soy sauce and vinegar.   Just before serving, dice the tuna, then stir in the diced spices and the dressing.  Taste for seasoning.  Serve a small portion atop the tortilla chips.

Smoked Trout with Chives on Potato Chips
Credit to Bon Appetit for the general idea.  I swapped in trout for smoked salmon, but either would work beautifully.

1/2 lb. or so of good quality smoked trout
1 bag of kettle cooked potato chips, picked through to select the flattest ones
1/2 c. sour cream, mixed with a little lemon zest
2-3 Tbs. very finely minced chives

With a fork, carefully chunk up the trout into small, bite sized pieces.  Try not to handle too much.  Transfer the sour cream to a squeeze bottle, if you have one.   You can do this much ahead of time and refrigerate for later.  About 5 minutes before you are ready to serve, set out your potato chips onto a serving tray.  Place a portion of trout on each chip.  Squeeze a little sour cream on top of each piece of trout, then sprinkle generously with chives.  Serve immediately.

These appetizers were my contribution to a recent event we did as a school fundraiser.   By popular demand, I also brought back the showstopping Chocolate Mousse Shots with Salted Caramel and Whipped Creme Fraiche.  (follow link for recipe)

*Of course, you also need a sharp knife, a few hours, and about fifty bucks worth of prime sushi grade ahi to go with it.  But if you have a coupon for the chips, it's a great deal.

** The other secret weapon?  A cheese platter, of course!

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