Turns out kitchens are full of budding artists. We asked a roll call of top chefs to design the perfect Christmas canapé. These are the drawings they sent us
1. Sandia Chang – co-founder, Bubbledogs
A take on that old festive favourite, pigs in blankets. Served in a salty-sweet pretzel roll, the chipolata is wrapped in bacon and topped with dried cranberries and a crunchy brussels sprout slaw.
2. Jeremy Pang – executive chef, Cha Chaan Teng
Christmas morning breakfast canapé
One for an early morning (or late-night) event, this beetroot and spring onion-flecked pancake is topped with star anise, cinnamon and jasmine tea-infused egg, crispy kale, deep-fried shallots and pickled ginger.
3. Atul Kochhar – chef-patron, Benares
Seasonal smoked scallop
This tandoor scallop skewer is marinated in ginger, chilli and cumin. Wrapped in pancetta and served with mulled cranberry relish on samphire and spinach, this tasty morsel is then topped with saffron and champagne foam.
4. Matt Robinson – executive head chef, Dickie Fitz
Lobster gyoza canapé
This one’s a Japanese-style dumpling, filled with diced lobster meat, fresh ginger, chives and chilli, and served with a ginger, soy and vinegar sauce for dipping into.
5. Ken Tolley – head chef, Hoi Polloi
Organic, hot-smoked salmon is served on blinis, spread with herb and citrus crème fraîche, then topped with a quail’s egg and a generous dollop of caviar. A typically Nordic-tinged bite from the Ace Hotel restaurant.
6. Jean-Philippe Blondet – executive chef, Alain Ducasse
A sheet of celeriac is rolled after being filled with white crab meat, celeriac remoulade, horseradish and diced apple. The canapé is glazed with an apple jelly, topped with Kristal caviar and served chilled on silver spoons.
7. Rose Lloyd Owen – founder, Peardrop
Partridge à la Peardrop
Pan-fried partridge and chestnut, topped with Rose’s quick pear chutney and garnished with crispy parma ham shards. The whole thing is then presented on a festive bed of pine needles.
8. Michael Reid – executive chef, M Restaurants
Pork, blue cheese & pistachio croquette
Encased in a pistachio crust, you’ll find a pork, sage and onion stuffing layer with a stichelton blue cheese centre – all topped with a winter-spiced pear purée. Great seasonal flavours.
9. Alexandre Nicolas – executive chef, Rivea London
Marinated wild sea bass & citrus
The canapé is composed of citrus-marinated wild sea bass, fresh citrus segments, condiments and served on a spoon. To finish, some lemon caviar and coriander cress on top.
10. Jun Tanaka – chef-patron, The Ninth
Tarte fine of pickled pears, smoked mallard & chestnuts
Sweet and tart pickled pears complement the smoky richness of the tender mallard. It’s the sliced raw chestnuts that add that nutty crunch. Puff pastry frames the whole thing beautifully.
11. Mark Birchall – chef-patron, Moor Hall
Blood pudding tart
When his restaurant opens this autumn, Mark will serve this combination of shaved raw chestnut with smoked butternut cream, bacon jam, blood pastry and baked blood pudding.
12. Jeremy Coste – co-founder, Ahi Poké & North Audley Cantine
Lobster pokē taco
This grilled lobster and avocado taco is dressed with sesame shoyu and a squeeze of lime. Add a sprig of coriander and a sprinkle of black sesame, and this Hawaii-Mex treat is ready.
13. Luke Matthews – executive head chef, Chewton Glen
Fillet of venison wellington, mushroom & truffle
Small seared fillets are brushed with tarragon mustard. It’s then finished with cep duxelles flavoured with truffle, a herb pancake, spinach and puff pastry.
14. André Garrett – executive chef, Cliveden House
Foie gras, smoked eel, soy pearls, fennel & seaweed
Seared foie gras and warm smoked eel are combined with tapioca pearls cooked with soy dashi, diced apple, shaved fennel, and roasted chicken juices seasoned with dashi vinegar.
This article was first published in Squaremeal Christmas 2016