Monday, February 07, 2011

Tuna and caper pâté

The husband and I are fond of a pre-dinner drink (or two). The trouble is that with that pre-dinner drink, we usually feel the urge to indulge in a pre-dinner nibble. This, I have no doubt, is one of the key reasons for our overly expansive waistlines. (This, and our fondness for cheese, proper puddings and cake). Whilst we know that eating earlier would help ease this habit, we're not actually willing to forgo this favourite part of our day. It is the time we relax post-work, talk through the day's events and generally unwind whilst one of us potters round the kitchen creating dinner.

We try to keep our snacking under control and stick to reasonably 'healthy' nibbles. Low-fat hummous with carrot sticks, olives or tomato salsa spread on melba toasts are staples in this house. We love them, but we get tired of them too. When friends are here, or at weekends, we are more adventurous and make more fancy canapes but mid-week, it is all about low effort. Whilst browsing through some of my favourite food blogs the other day, I stumbled accross a tuna and caper pâté on the Kitchen Diaries Challenge blog which rather caught my fancy. I find the salty tang of foods like capers, olives or anchovies just perfect for awakening the taste buds prior to the main event. I had most of the ingredients to hand in the cupboard and simply improvised for the rest. It took mere moments to make - a 'bung it all in and whizz it all up' recipe. The best sort for mid-week really.

Served moments later with a crisp glass of white and some melba toasts, it was a very delicious 'snackette' (as we like to refer to such things). It would make a nice starter too and, as it uses low-fat mayo, is pretty healthy too.

Do you like a pre-dinner 'snackette'? If so, what do you tend to choose?

Tuna and caper pâté


1 tin of tuna, drained
half a small red onion or a shallot, finely chopped
2 heaped tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise
juice half a small lemon (to taste)
2 heaped teaspoons capers, well-rinsed
1/2 tsp paprika
handful flat-leaved parsley

1. Place all ingredients except lemon juice and capers into food processor and whizz to combine.

2. Add lemon juice a little at a time, tasting after each addition until the balance seems right.

3. Add the capers and pulse briefly so they are combined but not completely broken up. You want a little texture here.

4. Scrape into a serving dish and (ideally) leave for an hour or so in the fridge for the flavours to combine. If greedy and rushed like us, serve immediately with melba toasts or crudités. Or spread on crostini, as suggested by Maggie at Kitchen Diaries Challenge.

5. Serve with a crisp glass of white wine.


Kerri said...

Nuts. Always nuts for us, especially with something sparkling.

I try not to succumb too often but I think, as you mentioned, perhaps I should just give into it and work the main meal around it. I really enjoy the time too so it would be a shame to avoid it just for the sake of a few calories.

bellini valli said...

I have all of the ingredients ready and waiting. I love it when I don't need to hesd to the store.

Cursuri Franceza said...

This looks great. Of course I like a pre-dinner “snackette” as you call it. And for me it’s always nuts, pretzels, popcorn or even bites of the food I’m making just to be extra sure it’s great.

Nicisme said...

What a great idea to serve this with pre-dinner drinks. Looks delicious and easy too.