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Tiny Party Sandwiches

9 Aug

Let’s say you are in charge of providing snacks and treats for a party.  The party is not a dinner affair, nor a lunchtime soiree, but rather something that falls in between.  It’s a casual backyard get together, and you are expecting 30-40 people to join you.  Though those people will certainly not be expecting you to provide them a meal, it is, of course, assumed that you will be laying out a selection of light bites to hold people over until their next meal, which should helpfully supply some sort of absorbent landing pad for the selection of beer and wine that are also very likely to be consumed.

You’ll, of course, want to make something that isn’t terribly time consuming to begin with, but you’ll also help yourself immensely by making something that is capable of being replenished quickly and with minimal fuss.

Do you know what you want to do?  You want to make your lovely guests some sandwiches.

Now, hear me out on this one.  I am not advocating that you bust out the deli ham and mustard (though, to clarify, there is, of course, nothing wrong with serving such a thing to your guests).  What I am talking about in this instance is a selection of spreads and toppings laid atop tiny slices of baguette.  It’s not quite crostini, and not really bruschetta, but more of a cross between an open-faced sandwich and an appetizer.

The components are simple, but pleasing.  Light and creamy ricotta cheese is folded together with a sprinkle of herbs, honey, or spices.  The ricotta is generously spread on top of a small piece of crusty bread, then topped with a vegetable or fruit of your choosing.  One sandwich pictured here features a cool mint and ricotta spread topped with fresh cucumbers.  The other, which happens to be pleasing to both children and adults, is a lightly honey-sweetened ricotta topped with ripe strawberries, then drizzled with just a thread more honey.  That’s it.  You’re done.  Two baguettes later, your guests are pleased, your tummy is pleased, and you’ve discovered the secret to a delicious party snack that is light, fresh, and delicious, but also delightfully uncomplicated.

Leaving you all the more time to actually enjoy your own party while you simultaneously enjoy your sandwiches.

Mint Ricotta and Cucumber Sandwiches

2 cups ricotta cheese

1/2 small garlic clove, smashed and finely chopped

1/3 cup finely chopped fresh mint

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

2 medium cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced

1 large baguette, sliced into 1/2-inch thick slices

In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, garlic, mint, and olive oil.  Mix well and add salt and pepper to taste.

Top each slice of baguette with 1 tablespoon of ricotta mixture, then top ricotta with thin slices of cucumber.

Honey Ricotta and Strawberry Sandwiches

2 cups ricotta cheese

6 tablespoons honey, divided

pinch of salt

1 pound of ripe strawberries, hulled and thinly sliced

1 large baguette, sliced into 1/2-inch thick slices

In a small bowl, combine ricotta cheese with 4 tablespoons of honey.  Add pinch of salt and mix to combine.

Top each slice of baguette with 1 tablespoon of ricotta mixture, then top ricotta with 3 or 4 thin slices of strawberry.

When you have topped all of the slices of baguette, thinly and lightly drizzle remaining 2 tablespoons of honey over the tops of the assembled sandwiches.

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One Response to “Tiny Party Sandwiches”

  1. Corinna August 9, 2011 at 2:11 pm #

    Having recently attended one of your sandwich-afternoon-in-between parties, I must admit that I single-handedly consumed no less than 20 of these delicious bites. The cucumber ones I especially loved.

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