This is actually one of my favourite canape recipes.
These are incredibly easy to make and are one of those things that are FAR more delicious than they sound. Like mince pies, or honeycomb, or chocolate bark. None of those things sounds particularly delicious, but gosh name can be deceptive. People pop these little morsels in their mouths and you see their eyes sparkle with joy.
These little sweet potato scones are light, and have that elusive melt-in-the-mouth quality. I also think they look really pretty with all the different colours. They are my number one, go-to vegetarian canape, but they are one of those rare vegetarian morsels that won’t have meat eaters gasping for the steak.
I used to roast the cherry tomatoes, but I have actually stopped doing that because I like the juiciness of the fresh tomato with the contrast of the soft scone. You can of course use pesto from a jar but I would urge you to try making your own, because it is just so easy and so much more delicious.
This recipe will make about 35-40 scones – (if using a 1 1/2 inch cutter). This sounds like a lot, but they freeze beautifully and it’s worth making a big batch so you will always have some on hand.
- 15 g butter (1 tbsp), cold
- 115 g sugar (1/2 cup)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 220g sweet potato
- 450 g flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- (some recipes call for an egg, but I have always found that the sweet potato makes it all wet enough without needing the egg)
- First things first, preheat the oven to 220 C.
- Now line two baking sheets with baking parchment paper, so they are ready to go.
- Now, you need to cook the sweet potato. I have found the easiest way to do this is to pop them in the microwave, as they are and cook on full for about 6 minutes until they are soft. Then when they are cooked, you can cut in half and scoop out the orange flesh. Then mash with a fork to really smoosh it up. Obviously, you could also roast the sweet potato in the oven, or peel, cut into cubes and mash like you do with the ordinary potato.
- Now, put the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder in a bowl. Add the diced butter and work it with your fingers until it resembles very fine bread crumbs. You do this by squishing the butter between your fingertips. If you sort of pinch the butter into the dry ingredients, you will eventually end up with a fine sand like texture.
- Now add your mashed sweet potato and give it a gentle mix, but don't overmix.
- Sprinkle some flour onto the worktop, I like to pretend I am a TV chef as I do this.
- Tip your dough out onto the worktop and smoosh out with your hands, you can use a rolling pin, but I normally find just pushing it gently with your hands does the job. You want the dough to be about 1 inch thick.
- Take a cutter and punch out the scones, place on the baking tray and cook for about 15 minutes until they are lightly golden and you can pick them up.
- Top each scone with a blob of creme fraiche, followed by a blob of pesto and then top with a cherry tomato.
- You can make these up a couple of hours before you serve them. They will sit quite happily. Unless you gobble them all yourself.
- So easy to whip up - use either a food processor, blender, or pestle and mortar
- 2 large handfuls of rocket (about 1 of the bags of rocket you buy at the supermarket)
- 1 handful of basil
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 50g pine nuts, gently toasted - in a dry frying pan
- generous glug of olive oil
- 50g grated parmesan
- Pop the rocket, basil, garlic, pine nuts and a glug of olive oil into the food processor.
- Whizz it up until it forms a paste. Then tip into a bowl and stir in the grated parmesan. Taste and add salt and pepper as you think it may need it. Then top up with olive oil.
- To serve: Cut the top and bottom of the cherry tomatoes, so that they have a sturdy bottom. (Chortle, chortle). Doing this will help the tomatoes balance on the scones. Sprinkle some salt and pepper on the tomatoes and drizzle with the tiniest smidge of olive oil.
“I think” said the sweet potato, “therefore I yam”.