Engagement Party Canape’s

Posted on Sep 4, 2010 in Picnic Inspired, Starters

You know you’re growing up when your friends are getting married and having babies. The 21st parties are over; now its 30th’s, engagements, weddings and baby showers.

Two of my closest friends Megan and Ed, are tying the knot and their engagement party was on Saturday. They hosted the special event at their Brisbane North side home. Megan had been working hard all week preparing tasty canapes and tapas morsels. To help feed the 70+ guests attending, I offered to bring along a couple of tasty canape’s too.

My mission on Saturday was to prepare Chicken Rice Paper Rolls – the perfect canape. I’m a huge fan of Vietnamese food and I’ve searched for a tasty rice paper roll recipe that actually tasted good. I found this one on Foodie Wanderings blog and the flavour is plentiful.

Next was Tomato, Bocconcini and Basil Tartlets with Balsamic dressing. I made these a few years ago for a picnic; they are so easy and so delicious! Last but by no means least are Small Prawn Toast Canapé’s. These tasty little toasts from heaven have been a party favourite for years. My dear Aunty Kathy would often bring them to family events and I would watch them get gobbled down in minutes. I eventually had the recipe handed down to me and I’ve been making them ever since!

Chicken Rice Paper Roll Canape


1 pack of rice paper wrappers
100g vermicelli rice noodles
1 red chilli (deseeded & chopped)
1/2 to 3/4 cup spring onions, sliced thinly length ways into long matchsticks
1/2 red capsicum, sliced into thin, long matchsticks
1 grated carrot
1/2 continental cucumber, unpeeled, washed, deseeded & sliced into long matchsticks
Knob of fresh ginger
1 clove of garlic, minced or finely chopped
Meat from a cooked, bbq deli chicken, free range, organic
Bunch of fresh mint; a couple will be used for presentation per roll
Bunch of fresh coriander
1 teaspoon of lime zest
1 tablespoon of lime juice
1 tsp Sesame oil
3 tbls Soy Sauce
Ketcap Manis or substitute 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar & extra tablespoon of ordinary soy sauce
1 tsp Fish sauce
3 tbls Sweet chilli sauce
Paper towels to dry each wrapper as it gets removed from the soaking water
Roasted, lightly salted crushed peanuts… about 1/3 cup


Prepare all of your fillings and put on a large plate or platter; shred chicken, slice vegies, minced garlic, grate ginger, zest your lime, get your sauce bottles out.

Have a dish of water big enough to soak rice paper wrappers. They only take a minute to soak, so don’t soak your first one until all of your filling ingredients are ready.

Soak your vermicelli rice noodles by soaking in cold water for 15 minutes & cut into smaller lengths; just use scissors.

After soaking noodles, put into a pot of boiling water for about 2 to 3 minutes & drain immediately & rinse with cold water. Briefly drain noodles in colander to squeeze out excess moisture.

While noodles are still draining, sprinkle a few drops of sesame oil over them and a splash of soy and about a tablespoon of sweet chilli sauce. Mix through so noodles don’t stick together.

Have a clean, dry work surface ready in front of you.

In a bowl add shredded chicken meat and semi-seasoned noodles.

Prepare final step of noodle seasoning

In a small saucepan saute the ginger, garlic, chilli & lime zest in some hot oil for about 30 seconds.

Pour hot seasoning mix over noodles and chicken and stir through well.


Work with one rice paper wrapper at a time.

Soak wrapper, completely submerged in water for a minute.

Remove from water, drain and place on a clean, dry work surface.

When you’ve removed a wrapper, place another one into your water to soak.

Along one edge of prepared sheet of rice paper place 2 mint leaves.

Add vegie matchsticks, being capsicum, carrot and cucumber being careful not to over-stuff.

Keep a centimeter or two at the top and bottom of your wrapper free because you’ll need to fold down the top and bottom later when rolling.

Top vegie matchsticks with some chicken/noodle mixture (about 2 tablespoons).

Top chicken/noodle mixture with a generous amount of fresh coriander leaves, around 2 tablespoons.

Sprinkle with crushed peanuts (around half to one teaspoon per roll).

Fold down top and bottom part of your wrapper over mixture, then each side, start rolling mixture into a thick cigar shape. No need to moisten edges because once rolled up, the edges will stick together.

Repeat process until you there’s nothing left in the bowl! Keep rolls covered and cool in fridge if not eating immediately.

Canape – Tomato, Bocconcini and Basil Tartlets with Balsamic dressing


4 Sheets frozen puff pastry
Punnet of cherry tomatoes or roma
1/3 cup cream
2 eggs
salt and pepper
Sliced basil leaves
Olive oil
Balsamic vinegar


Cut each sheet of pasty into rounds about 5cm larger that the base of individual tartlet tins.

Brush or spray tins lightly with oil. Ease pasty into tin, folding neatly into a free form edge.

Arrange some sliced basil and balanced amounts of tomato and cheese. Place on a baking tray.

Whisk together cream, eggs and seasonings. Pour equal amounts into each pastry case.

Bake in moderate oven (180 degrees) for 25-30 minutes or until pastry is crisp and filling is set.

Serve warm on a bed or rocket leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Aunty Kathy’s Small Prawn Toast Canape’s


250g good quality butter
2 tbls each of dried, basil and parsley
A bunch of fresh dill
Small fresh prawns (the sweeter the better)
Lemon segments (inc. skin)


Mix the butter and dried herbs and fresh dill, reserving a few tips for garnish.

Spread a small amount of butter on each piece of toast. Top with a piece of fresh prawn, lemon segment, caviar and a dill sprig.

Sadly there are no photo’s of these, they were gobbled up before I got my camera out. I will make them again soon I’m sure and will post a photo then.

I didn’t manage to take any photos of the tapas and canapes at the party either; as soon as I got there it was party time and the hours got away from me. I need to lift my game next time I think. Oh well it’s been fun so far, and it’s only going to get better 🙂


  1. Oh my Kirsten! I remember those prawn toast you made them once when we lived in Palm Beach, They are amazing and I was only thinking of them the other day. Also come to think of it, the first time I tried rice paper rolls was when you made them. You are a legend in the kitchen my friend!

  2. Ive been looking for canape ideas for my 30th… and now ive found some! Im totally going to do the tartlets and rice paper rolls. Thanks 🙂

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