Perfect Cocktail Canapé Recipes, ‘Quinoa Arancini’
Jun 14, 2019

Any excuse to host a cocktail party gets our vote, time and time again. We know first hand how important a good recipe is and that’s why we want to share a few with you guys. Perfect Canapé recipes – ideal for cocktail hour!

At Your Table’ is all about the social side of things. We love to host parties, showcase the food created by our talented chefs and offer inspiration to keen at-home cooks, pedantic party planners and soiree slickers.

For this recipe post we have chosen an ‘outside the box’ unique play on the classic canapé ‘Arancini’

The web is full with ‘run of the mill’ arancini recipes. We wanted to offer something different, something you probably haven’t tried.

This Arancini Recipe is based on quinoa instead of Arborio risotto rice and uses fresh cashew paste to bind as opposed to dairy and starch.

It’s gluten free, dairy free, vegan and absolutely delicious! Even the most dedicated carnivore would struggle to dislike these little nuggets!

Quinoa, cashew and soft herb arancini


  • 500g Quinoa (ideally black or red for presentation)
  • 500g Cashews
  • Filter water
  • Nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 2 Lemons
  • 2 Cloves garlic
  • 1 white onion
  • Chives, sml handful
  • Parsley, sml handful
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive oil
  • Salt/Pepper
  • Sherry vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons ground flaxseed or Lsa powder
  • 300 ml Soy milk
  • 200 g Rice flour
  • 300 g Gluten free breadcrumbs

A perfect canapé recipe; in cooking terms, literally nothing like it’s classic inspired forefather! However, to eat, it has the same delicious crunchy texture, gooey centre and is a perfect canapé style food to serve alongside some delicious summer cocktails.

For the Cashew puree (this can be made on the day, however, one day in advance will enhance flavours)

Soak the Cashews for 2-3 hours in filtered water. Once soaked, drain (keeping the liquid) and add the cashews to a food processor. Blend the cashews, adding a liquid if necessary, trying to retain a thick yet smooth consistency. At this stage adding half a teaspoon of nutritional yeast can help enhance the fermentation, creating a slight cheesy flavour to the puree (not essential but it can be very tasty) Discard any leftover water from the cashews.

Once you have a smooth puree (yeast or no yeast), leave in a bowl, covered with glad wrap (make a few holes with a knife) and leave at room temp for 24 hours. If you don’t have 24 hours to spare, simply set to one side.

For the Quinoa,

Rinse with cold water and drain. For this canapé recipe we are going to use the absorption cooking method. We want a well cooked, fluffy quinoa to lighten the arancini. Therefore, we will use 2 parts water to 1 part aranicini. In this case 500g Quinoa, 1 Litre of water.

Bring to a simmer with a lid, once the simmer is reached, allow to cook until nearly all the liquid has disappeared. At this stage turn the heat off and leave the lid on, allowing the quinoa to soak up the last of the liquid. Once slightly cooled, set to one side.

Meanwhile finely dice the onion, garlic and zest of two lemons. Place in a small pan with the olive oil and confit until soft and tender.

Once you have these three elements you can mix them all together, adding the cashew paste to create a thick yet pliable arancini mix. You want to be able to roll the mix into a ball. At this stage add the finely chopped herbs, lemon juice, a little splash of sherry vinegar, salt and pepper to taste.

Once you are happy with the taste, roll the mix into small balls, spread evenly on a tray and freeze. (freezing the arancini is not essential but it makes handling the quinoa balls a lot easier).

To breadcrumb the arancini you will need 3 bowls, one for the rice flour, one for the gluten free breadcrumbs and one for the soy milk. Add the ground flax seed to the soy milk and whisk until smooth.

Roll the balls in the flour, then the milk mix, then the breadcrumbs. At each stage being careful to coat evenly. Once breadcrumbed simply deep fry at approx. 170 C, then serve.

For presentation a puree or herb paste is perfect to stop the arancini sliding around on the plate. For this recipe a zesty salsa verde or lemon garlic pesto would really make those flavours pop!

We hope you thoroughly enjoy this enticing alternative to the usual aranicini suspects found at a cocktail gig (not to say classic arancini isn’t delicious, it really is and we serve lots of them). We just wanted to demonstrate the diversity of the of these classic perfect canapé recipes.

Perfect Canape recipes in the hands of an experienced chef can offer so much room for creativity,

Do you have any perfect canapé recipes of your own?

We would love to hear your ideas and comments below,

Chris Wright


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