Here’s an idea for some crowd-pleasing party nibbles, which can be either vegetarian or vegan depending on your choice of fillings. They are lovely served with a dip, either a spicy salsa or maybe a creamy avocado mayonnaise, but just as good served as they are straight from the oven.
They have a little surprise inside in the form of all your favourite pizza toppings – I used chilli, olive and caper, but you can use just about anything you like. Just remember that your fillings won’t have much time to cook being buried inside the dough, so avoid raw veg which needs a good time to cook, or anything which will release water as it cooks and could make your dough ball sloppy.
I used this Garlic & Rosemary Focaccia bread mix, which I find makes the process really simple without any weighing or measuring needed, but by all means make your own simple white bread dough if you prefer.
You will quickly get the hang of how much filling you can squeeze in to each one – too much and its tricky to completely seal the dough ball and it can ooze out whilst cooking, but too little and they will be disappointing!
If you’re feeling particularly decadent, make some garlic butter (or dairy-free margarine), and half way through cooking, put a blob on the top of each dough ball. You could also sprinkle with a bit of cheese, (real or dairy-free). Delicious!
- 500 g packet Focaccia Bread Mix
- 200 ml passata
- 12 black olives, roughly chopped
- 30 capers
- handful fresh basil, roughly chopped
- 1 large red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
Make up the bread mix according to packet instructions, and leave to rise for 45 minutes in a warm place.
Tip the dough onto a floured surface, then divide the dough into 4 equal pieces, then each quarter into 4 again, then each piece into two. You should now have 32 small balls of dough.
Taking each ball in turn, squash it into a rough circle shape, add half a teaspoon of passata, a sprinkle of chopped olives, a caper, some chilli and basil. Close the ball around the filling and pinch the dough to seal, then roll into a ball, and place seam side down on a lightly oiled baking tray.
Preheat the oven to 200C / 400F / Gas Mark 6. Leave the dough balls to rise again whilst the oven heats up.
Bake the dough balls for 10-12 mins until golden and risen.
For more ideas for party food, nibbles and canapés, take a look at my post 45 Vegetarian Party Nibbles & Canapés