Monday, December 20, 2010

Quail Egg Canapes

If only I had some caviar!

I made these darling little amuse bouche for a cooking class that I taught at Bella Kitchen Essentials tonight.  The theme was a simple, elegant cocktail party- this was a little more complicated but I wanted to surprise the students with a little bite to start off the evening!  The method is straight from the CIA, but the addition of horseradish in the yolk mixture is my own twist.

Deviled Quail Eggs

yield: 18 finished canapes

10 quail eggs
1 T mayonnaise (approximate)
2 t prepared (not creamed) horseradish
Salt and white pepper to taste
2 lush sprigs dill
9 pumpernickel or rye cocktail toasts
1 T butter

Bring a small pot of water to a boil.  Lower the quail eggs in and simmer for six and a half minutes.  Immediately plunge into an ice bath.  Once they have cooled a bit, peel carefully (note: quail egg shells and inner membranes are much tougher than those of chicken eggs, so be firm but delicate).  

Halve the eggs, then gently scoop out the yolks.  Mix the yolks with the horseradish, salt and pepper and enough mayonnaise to create a very smooth paste.  Wipe the whites clean of any stray bits of yolk.

Take a circle cutter and stamp circles just slightly larger than the base of an egg half- you should be able to get two out of each toast.  Heat a small saute pan and melt the butter in it.  Fry the toast rounds until lightly crisped on both sides.  Remove from the pan, season with salt, and allow to cool completely.

With a piping bag fitted with a small star tip, pipe the filling into eighteen of the twenty egg halves.  With the remaining filling, create a base on the toasts to adhere the egg halves with.  You'll want a small mound to nestle the egg in to. 

Before placing the egg halves, select small fronds of dill and garnish each egg with one piece.  Set each egg half on one piece of toast.  The extra filling on the base should hold the egg in place.  Serve immediately!

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