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7 canape and cocktail recipes that are guaranteed to please

Celebrate in style with these delicious recipes

party recipes
May 17, 2018
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1 spiced watermelon mint goats cheese

Whether you’re celebrating a milestone like HELLO! with a gathering for a crowd, or hosting a more intimate affair for friends, our cutting edge canapes and cocktails from award-winning London-based luxury catering company Rocket Food are guaranteed to please.

Spiced watermelon, chilled mint, lemon & lime salt, goat's cheese

Serves 10

Preparation time 30 minutes, plus overnight

Cooking time 10-15 minutes


• 150g/5oz soft goat’s cheese

• 100ml/4fl oz double cream

• 1 lemon

• 1 lime

• 1 tsp Maldon salt

• 10 Swedish crackers

• 1 tsp finely chopped fresh chives

• Edible flower petals, to decorate (optional)

For the spiced watermelon

• 1/4 watermelon, seeds removed

• 75g/3oz fine salt

•1ltr/1 3/4pt water

For the melon pickling liquor

• 200g/7oz caster sugar

• 125ml/4 1/2fl oz white wine vinegar

• 125ml/4 1/2fl oz water

• 1 lemon

• 1 cinnamon stick

• 2 cloves

• 1/4 tsp allspice


1. Start by making the watermelon rind pickle: cut away the flesh from the rind of the watermelon leaving 1cm/1/2in of flesh attached the rind. Cut the rind into short strips.

2. Mix the 75g/3oz salt with the water and place the rind into the brine. Leave in the fridge overnight.

3. Next day, wash the rind, place into a pan and cover with fresh water. Simmer for 10 minutes then remove and set aside, ready to add to the pickling liquor.

4. Mix all the pickling liquor ingredients together in a saucepan and simmer for 5 minutes, then add the reserved cooked melon rind to the pickling liquor and chill until needed. This can be done a few days in advance if needed.

5. Put the goat’s cheese in a bowl and mix with the double cream, adding a bit at a time until it resembles soft whipped cream. Put into a piping bag.

6. For the garnish, zest half of the lemon and the lime and mix with the Maldon salt in a pestle and mortar.

7. To assemble, take a cracker and break it into size you would like. Snip the corner off the piping bag and pipe small dots of the goat’s cheese mix over the cracker – 4-6 will be enough.

 8. Cut the pickled watermelon into 5mm/1/4in pieces and again place them sporadically on the cracker. Finish with a seasoning of lemon and lime salt and a few chopped chives for garnish, with a few edible flower petals scatter over, if liked.

2 Lime basil honey melon

Lime, basil & honey cantaloupe melon with feta

Serves 10

Preparation time 40 minutes, plus overnight marinating


• ½ cantaloupe melon, deseeded

• 1 ripe tomato, quartered and deseeded

• Olive oil

• A good squeeze of lemon juice

• 100g/4oz feta, crumbled and bound with a little double cream (about 1-2 tbsp)

• 5 good quality pitted black olives, chopped finely

• Sprigs of fresh basil leaves and edible flower petals, to serve

For the lime & honey syrup

• 4 tbsp fresh lime juice

• 1 zest of 1 lime

• 1 tbsp caster sugar

• 1tbsp runny honey

• 2 tsp finely grated fresh ginger


1. Mix all the ingredients for the syrup together well and set aside.

2. Meanwhile, remove the rind from the melon and cut it into 2cm x 4cm/3/4in x 1 1/2in rectangles. Arrange in a large dish, cover with the syrup and leave to marinade overnight in the fridge.

3. Dice the tomato into 3mm/1/8in squares and then drizzle a little olive oil and squeeze of lemon juice

4. Remove the melon from the marinade and drain on a piece of kitchen towel.

Spoon a layer of the feta mix on top of the melon, top with the diced tomato and finish with a sprinkling of finely chopped black olive. To serve, garnish each one with a small sprig of fresh basil leaf and an edible flower petal or 2.

3 scallop pancetta speidini

Roast scallop & pancetta rosemary spiedini

Serves 10

Preparation time 25 minutes

Cooking time 5-7 minutes


• 10 small/medium scallops, roe removed

• 10 thin slices of smoked pancetta

• 10 long sprigs of fresh rosemary

• 1 lemon, cut into wedges


1. Gently wash the scallops in a bowl of cold water, clean and peel off any remaining membrane or roe and then place onto a dry tea towel. Refrigerate until ready to cook.

2. Make your spiedini by removing 2.5cm/1in of rosemary from the woody end of each sprig and then cut the end to an angle to create a spear.

3. Wrap each chilled scallop in a piece of pancetta and skewer with the rosemary sprig.

4. Preheat the oven to 200°C, 400°F, Gas 6.

5. When ready, colour the skewers in a hot frying pan for 25 second each side, transfer to a baking tray and finish off in the oven for 4-5 minutes. Serve piled onto a platter with a wedges of lemon for squeezing over.

4 Rocket vermicelli prawn lollipops

Vermicelli prawn lollipops with wasabi mayo

Serves 10

Preparation time

Cooking time


• 1 egg

• 25m/1fl oz milk

• 100g/4oz flour

• Salt and freshly ground black pepper

• 5 medium raw prawns, deveined and cut in half length ways

• Vermicelli noodles, whizzed in a blender

• 4 tsp wasabi paste

• 50ml/2fl oz mayonnaise


1. Whisk the egg with the milk and set aside.

2. Place the flour in a bowl, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and then roll the prepared prawn halves in it and shake off any excess. Next, dip the floured prawns into the egg mix thoroughly to cover. Shake off the excess egg and then place into the blender and blitz with the vermicelli noodles. Put in the fridge until needed.

3. Mix the mayonnaise with the wasabi paste, depending on how spicy you want it. Put into a bowl and chill until ready to serve.

4. Preheat the oven to 200°C, 400°F. Gas 6.

5. Make 10 equal-size portions of the chilled prawn mix. Arrange on a non-stick baking tray and squirt with olive oil spray. Place into the preheated hot oven and cook for 7-9 minutes, flipping halfway through, until thoroughly cooked, browned and crispy.

6. Perch a prawn ball on top of each skewer and serve with a dab of the mayo on top!

5 Tuna tarte on black sesame rice crackers

Tuna Tarte on black sesame rice crackers

Serves 10

Preparation time 25-35 minutes


• 200g/7oz good quality fresh tuna

• ½ red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

• 1 spring onion, trimmed and finely sliced

• Juice of 1/2 lime

• Light soy sauce

• Fish sauce

• ½ tsp finely grated fresh ginger

• 10 black sesame rice crackers

• A pinch of black or white sesame seeds

• A few sprigs of fresh coriander, finely chopped


1. Dice the tuna into 5mm/1/4in squares being careful not to over work as it can easily turn pale. Add some of the chilli to taste, you can add more if you like it hot. Stir in the spring onion and half the lime juice followed by 1 tbsp each of the light soy and fish sauce and the grated ginger.

2. Mix gently, adding more of the chilli, lime, soy and fish sauce as you go to strengthen and season, to suit your palette. This can’t sit for more than 15 minutes as the citrus will turn the tuna pappy.

3. Pile on to the crackers, sprinkle with the sesame seeds and finish with some coriander, if liked, for freshness very last second

6 Fridas Mezcal Mule

Frida's Mezcal Mule

A mule with one mighty Mexican kick! Serve in a long glass or copper-style mugs.

Makes 1

Preparation time 5 minutes


• Ice cubes

• 50ml/2fl oz Mezcal (Jaral de barrio)

• Squeeze of lime

• Fever-Tree ginger beer

• Pinch of cayenne pepper

• A slice of lime and fresh mint sprig to serve


1. Pack a long glass or copper-style mug with ice. Pour over the Mezcal, add a squeeze of lime, top up with ginger beer and finish with a pinch of cayenne pepper.

2. Serve garnished with a lime wheel and a fresh sprig of mint.

7 No way rose

No way rose!

Ideally, serve this in a Martini glass. Perfect on a warm summer evening.

Makes 1


• Ice cubes

• 25ml/1fl oz Red Vermouth/Lillet Rouge

• 25g/1fl oz Sipsmith Gin

• 100ml/4fl oz fresh grapefruit juice

• 1 tsp Rhubarb Bitters

• 1 edible pink flower petal


1. Add the sweet red vermouth, gin, and fresh grapefruit juice to a shaker packed with ice cubes.

2. Add a splash of rhubarb bitters and shake.

3. Serve poured into a Martini glass and decorate with an edible flower petal.

Rocket Food is London’s leading luxury catering company and winner of the 2017 Country Life Canape of the Year award. Specialising in creatively interpreting bespoke and often niche food and drink experience briefs for clients, Rocket Foods boasts accreditation at 46 of London’s most exciting venues, including the British Museum, the V&A, Kensington Palace and the Natural History Museum.

Founded by brother and sister duo, Caroline Hall, a former private chef for Formula 1 and Michael Symonds, a highly experienced events manager for Searcys, what sets Rocket apart from its competitors is its heritage, its drive to deliver creativity without compromising quality and strong family values.

Rocket Food has a clear ambition: to bring a restaurant feel to all events by developing seasonally led menus.

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