This year we decided to have a simple family party for my daughter's birthday and while we were planning the menu we had so many things in mind that the list kept growing everyday. We decided to stick to small bites/appetizers that would be enjoyed by the kids and the adults alike. Keeping the Frozen theme in mind we made sandwiches (does 'we finish each other's sandwiches' ring a bell?!) and I went along with the recipe of my simple chicken & mayo sandwich which is one of the all time popular recipes on my blog. It has been the No#1 recipe for the longest time ever and so I knew that it wouldn't fail me this time.
To my bad luck the bread that we brought was already crushed a bit (shapeless/not firm enough as it was really fresh and soft and stacked improperly at the supermarket) so cutting off the edges to make nice triangular shaped sandwiches didn't quite work out. So we made a few sandwiches and decided to make more during the course of the party depending on how the kids received it. Since there were many more fun items that attracted the kids a bit more than my poor sandwiches they went almost untouched. I had a ton of the chicken & mayo spread to deal with by the end of the party. Not the ones who like to waste food the husband and I decided to give it a makeover and use it up in someway or the other. The baguette sitting on the counter came to our rescue and it was quickly cut up and slathered with this creamy spread to make for some pretty hors d'oeuvres (pronounced as 'or-derves') which are sure to win everyone's hearts at our next party.
The bacon topping was a last minute idea that the hubby came up with as we had picked up some mind blowing bacon rashers from Waitrose (at the Dubai Mall) the previous day. It was so stunning that we decided to top the chicken spread with a few chunks of it. A few chives (which cost us an arm and a leg) were sprinkled to make it all pretty and there! a pretty, appetizer was ready, which of course we hogged for breakfast the next day of the party, but who cares? It was delish!
Sliced baguettes with toppings are also called as bruschetta (pronounced as 'bruce-ske-thha') or crostini with a minor difference between the two although the terms are interchangeably used. While bruschetta features chopped tomatoes (most recipes call for it) along with other seasonings placed on French baguette (pronounced as 'bag-ett'), the crostini uses ciabatta (pronounced as 'chi-ba-tha') which is rubbed with garlic and slathered with olive oil before being topped up with cheese and seasonings and then toasted over live coals.
Since my experiment neither has tomatoes nor garlic-olive oil in it I have simply named it as baguette bites but please feel free to add either of the above mentioned ingredients to steer it towards its more traditional and fancy name.
Prep time: 10 mins | Cook time 10 mins | Servings: approx 18-20 medium sized bites
- 2 medium sized baguettes or 15-20 mini toast slices
For the chicken & mayo spread:
- 250 grams boneless chicken
- 1/2 cup (or more) mayonnaise
- 2-3 tablespoons of cream cheese
- 2-3 tablespoons of fresh cream (optional)
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- salt & pepper to taste
For the topping
- 4-5 bacon rashers (you may replace it with any other topping of your choice like turkey or beef bacon/ham)
- fresh chives or coriander to decorate
1. Wash and drain the chicken. Cut into thin strips and cook till tender with some salt (don't add too much of it) and pepper to taste. There is no need to add water while cooking as the chicken releases some stock of its own but do make sure that the bottom of the pan doesn't scorch
2. Remove, allow to cool and then shred. You can even pulse the chicken in a mixer grinder (don't grind, just pulse for 2-3 seconds at a time).
3. Transfer the contents into a bowl, add the mayonnaise, cream cheese, garlic and taste the mixture. Depending on the brands of mayonnaise and cream cheese used adjust the salt or fresh cream accordingly. Mix thoroughly. You can add some additional seasonings of your choice if you wish.
4. Slice the baguette diagonally into 1/4" pieces and spread a portion of the prepared chicken and mayo spread. Garnish with the toppings. Serve immediately
I used chicken tikka flavoured mayonnaise by a local brand named Noor. You can use any mayonnaise of your choice - plain or flavoured, it doesn't matter.