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Stuffed Capers

…well, stuffed caper berries, to be more precise. I’m not referring to the diminutive capers we use for tapenade, picatta, and puttanesca sauce. I’m talking about those large stem-on caper berries, which resemble smallish green olives. I’ve occasionally seen them used as garnish or dropped into a martini, but I’d never seen them stuffed, which was, of course, the only thing I wanted to do with them when I brought some home the other day.

To my mind, the caper berry seemed ideal for stuffing and the built-in stem makes it a perfect “pick up” food. A tray of stuffed caper berries would make an elegant an unusual appetizer or serve two to each person on a small plate as an amuse bouche, so, I thought why not give it a try?

How do you stuff a caper? First take a small sharp knife and slice a small “cap” off one side. Using the tip of the knife, remove the tiny seeds from inside each caper berry. For a stuffing, combine a raisin, a piece of walnut, and a small piece of roasted garlic inside the caper (or for a more homogenous stuffing, finely mince the stuffing ingredient and mix together before stuffing into the caper). Replace the “cap” and wrap the caper in a very small piece of puff pastry and place it on a baking sheet. Once they’re all stuffed, bake them at 400 degrees F until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. (Let them cool for a few seconds before biting into one because the inside is hot.) The result is not just plain old stuffed capers, but “pastry-wrapped” stuffed capers. (Remember, you saw it here first!)

They were so much fun to eat — just use the stem as a handle to pick them up. So cute, and literally bursting with great flavors and textures. I served them to company this weekend and everyone loved them.

In other news:
Cookbook Giveaway: There’s still time to enter the cookbook giveaway (see the previous post). The winner will receive a copy of American Vegan Kitchen by Tamasin Noyes. The winner will be chosen on July 12.

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