Simple, festive salmon canapes

Dr Chris Duckham suggests kicking off the festivities with this tasty treat washed down with some bubbly.

We are serving festive salmon and smoked salmon croustades as one of the canapes while customers peruse the December menu. Best served warm with a glass of chilled champagne.

Brandade of salmon croustades

1. Pre-heat the oven to 190 degsC and melt the butter in a saucepan.Slice the baguette into 1cm thick slices then cut a small disc from the centre and discard the rest. Brush both sides with butter.

2. Place on a non-stick baking sheet, transfer to the preheated oven. Bake for seven to eight minutes until crisp and golden.

3. For the brandade, cook the potatoes in a small pan of salted water until done then drain and mash coarsely.

4. Place the milk and 100ml water in another saucepan, bring to a simmer and cook the salmon fillet for two to three minutes until just done. Allow to cool in the pan.

5. Place the cooked salmon fillet in a food processor with the smoked salmon pieces. Blitz on high speed for a few seconds, add a little of the cooking liquid, and blend again to a loose puree.

6. Add the mashed potato, season and blitz briefly again. Place a teaspoonful of the brandade on each croustade and return to the oven for two to three minutes to reheat. Serve warm.

Ingredients
For 12 croustades

1 small French baguette, a day old
30g butter
For the brandade
4 charlotte potatoes, peeled
100ml milk
100g piece salmon fillet
40g smoked salmon pieces
Salt and pepper

Chris Duckham is a GP in Tongue and Armadale, Sutherland, and runs Restaurant Cote du Nord (www.cotedunord.co.uk). Email comments or queries to GPlife@haymarket.com

And for wine

Decanter magazine says: 'Champagne has the necessary acidity to cut through the oily fish.' Try: Taittinger, Brut Vintage 2000 £38.99 Oddbins, Majestic

Decanter judges say: 'Nice toastiness on the nose. Good entry. Elegant with excellent character and balance. Will age.'

Waitrose, Blanc de Blancs NV £18.99 Waitrose

Decanter judges say: 'Rich, dry, explosive, mature palate - loads of brioche and racy, zingy Chardonnay style. Lovely yeast.'

More award wining wines at Decanter.com.

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