Categories

Cookery Courses

View our range of short and long Bath-based vegetarian and vegan cookery courses running throughout the year.

View cookery courses

Gift Vouchers

Buy gift vouchers for our vegetarian and vegan cooking courses in our online shop.

Buy a gift voucher today
 

Twitter

Christmas Tree Bites

These Christmas Tree Bites are fun to make and perfect to serve as a nibble with drinks. If you haven’t got time to make the red and green pesto you could buy ready-made pesto.

Christmas Tree Bites

Serves 10-12, makes 40 

Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes | Cook Time: 15 -18 minutes

Ingredients

  • 500g block of puff pastry
  • 1 recipe of red pesto
  • 1 recipe green pesto

Red Pesto

Serves 6, Makes 120ml enough for 20 Xmas trees

Prep Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 30g almonds or pinenuts, roasted until golden
  • 30g hazelnuts, roasted, and skins rubbed off
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
  • 1 small red pepper, deseeded, roasted and peeled
  • 30g sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp tomato puree
  • 1tsp apple juice concentrate or maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. In a food processor grind the roasted almonds or pinenuts and roasted skinned hazelnuts to a large breadcrumb consistency, then decant them into a bowl and set aside.
  2. Place the garlic, roasted red pepper, sundried tomatoes, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, tomato puree, apple juice concentrate and olive oil into the food processor and blend until smooth.
  3. Pour the red pepper mixture into the ground nuts and mix well. Taste and adjust with salt, pepper and lemon juice as needed.

Green Pesto

Serves 6, Makes 120ml enough for 20 Xmas trees

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 30g almonds or pinenuts, toasted until golden
  • 30g hazelnuts, roasted and skins rubbed off
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
  • 30g fresh basil, de-stalked
  • 15g baby spinach leaves
  • 15g flat parsley, de-stalked
  • 45ml olive oil
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 1tsp apple juice concentrate or maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp finely grated Italian hard cheese (omit if vegan)
  • Pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. In a food processor grind the roasted almonds or pinenuts and roasted skinned hazelnuts to a large breadcrumb consistency, then decant them into a bowl and set aside.
  2. Place the garlic, basil leaves, spinach leaves, parsley leaves into the food processor and blend. Pour in the olive oil while blending until you have a smooth herby oil.
  3. Blend in the lemon juice, white wine vinegar and apple juice concentrate and grated cheese (if using). Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Pour the herb mixture into the ground nuts and mix well, taste again and adjust with salt, pepper and lemon juice as needed.

Method to make the trees

  1. Preheat oven to 170C Fan.
  2. On a floured surface, roll out the dough to 45cm long, 30cm wide rectangle, arrange it in a landscape position in front of you. Trim off a 5cm strip off the long side and use this strip to cut out 40 mini stars. I use a star or snowflake shape cutter from an icing cutter and stamp kit as they offer the smallest sizes of cutters. Lay the stars onto a large parchment lined baking tray and bake for 5-8 minutes in the preheated oven, until puffed and pale golden around the edges. When the Xmas trees are baked, the stars can then be pushed into the cocktail stick at the top of each Xmas tree.
  3. Over the remaining 40cm x 30cm rectangle, spread the green pesto over the right half and the red pesto over the left half. Cut 40 strips from top to bottom, each one 1cm wide. You will end up with 20 strips of each coloured pesto.
  4. Fold up each strip into a triangular Christmas tree shape. Start with a longer fold, then each successive fold should be shorter than the previous one, stacking up on top of each other to create a folded triangle shape. Try to get at least 5 folds into each strip, ending with a tiny one at the top. Stick a cocktail stick through the middle, top to bottom to hold the folds together, positioning the folded pastry in the centre of the cocktail stick, it will expand along the stick in both directions as it bakes.
  5. Arrange them flat onto 2 large parchment lined baking trays and bake for 15-18 minutes in the preheated oven until puffed and pale golden around the edges. Don’t bake for too long otherwise the pesto will go too dark.
  6. Leave to cool on a wire rack, then decorate each tree top with a baked star.

Tips

The pastries can be shaped and frozen uncooked. Bake straight from frozen, adding 5-10 minutes to the cooking time.

The pestos can be made well in advance and will keep in the fridge for a week or longer so long as the top is covered with a layer of olive oil. You can also freeze them.The pestos can also be served on crostini as canapes or with crudités, as a sauce on a pizza or stirred through pasta.

Cooking Tips

Roasting nuts: For hazelnuts, pop them onto a baking tray and into a hot oven, 200C Fan for 5-8 minutes until the skins start to split, cool slightly before rubbing the skins off.

For pine nuts and almonds, put them on a baking tray, into a medium hot oven, 170C Fan for 5-8 minutes or until pale golden brown.

To roast a red pepper, cut it in half and remove the stalk and seeds, place skin side uppermost onto a baking tray lined with parchment. Roast in a hot oven, 200C Fan for 15 to 20 minutes until the skin blisters. Place the pepper into a bowl and cover with cling film, leave covered until cooled down, then peel off the skin.


Delicious food photography by Rob Wicks of Eat Pictures.

Find us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram where we are chatting about all things foodie and, if you like this post, please share it!

To keep up to date with events and goings on at the cookery school sign up for our newsletter.

Comments