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TIP OF THE DAY: Make Savory Verrines

Yesterday we introduced dessert verrines, dishes layered in small glasses. They can be either sweet or savory; the goal is to create a visually-stunning and sophisticated small bite.

Today, we take on savory verrines, popular as appetizers or cocktail food. You can also serve them as sides with a main course.

Think of three to five foods you enjoy together, then layer them in a glass.

We especially like to turn leftovers into savory verrines. They hardly seem like leftovers when they’re placed in such glamorous surroundings.

SAVORY INGREDIENTS CHECKLIST

Here’s a beginning list; you’ll no doubt have more to add.

  • Beef & Lamb: The best option is cooked ground meat (crumble leftover burgers) or tartare. If you can chop steaks or other cuts thinly enough to be easily chewed, go for it.
  • Cheese, Crumbled Or Grated: Blue cheese, Cheddar, goat cheese, any Italian grating cheese, anything that can be crumbled or grated
  •  

    How to get people to eat their veggies: top
    mashed cauliflower and curried carrots with
    Greek yogurt or sour cream. Verrine glass
    from Starfrit.

     

  • Custards: Make soft custard flavored with basil, dill, fennel or mixed herbs
  • Dairy (For Layers Or Topping): Crème fraîche, fromage blanc, fromage frais, Greek yogurt or sour cream, plain or flavored with herbs: basil, chives, dill, fennel, garlic or mixed herbs
  • Dried Fruit: Dried blueberries, cherries, cranberries, raisins or chopped larger fruits such as apricots and plums (fruits pair well with meat and poultry)
  •  

    One of our favorite combinations:
    Guacamole, sour cream and salmon mousse,
    topped with smoked salmon. Photo courtesy
    Wallmonkey.

     
  • Fresh Fruit: Apples, pears or stone fruits, raw, poached or sautéed
  • Fish & Seafood: Ceviche, salmon and smoked salmon, salmon or tuna tartare, shellfish, any sashimi ingredient (chopped)
  • Mousse: Fish, seafood, chicken liver
  • Soups: Instead of making custard (or in addition to it), you can create a layer from cream soup concentrate (we’ve used cream of asparagus, celery, mushroom and tomato soups—add some herbs for complexity)
  • Vegetable Salad: Chopped, sliced or shredded cucumbers, radishes and/or tomatoes, tossed in vinagrette (you can add lentils or grains, from couscous to quinoa
  • Vegetable Purée: Anything from broccoli, cauliflower and carrots to mashed sweet potatoes
  • Wild Card: Beets, beans and legumes (including chickpeas, edamame, lentils and peas), corn, chopped olives, flavored rice or other grain, minced jalapeño, salsa
  •  
    To top it off, you can use one or more garnishes:

     

    GARNISHES

  • Bread: Breadstick, crumbled rice crackers, croutons, panko, seasoned bread crumbs
  • Chopped Nuts: Almonds, macadamias, pecans, pistachios, walnuts
  • Colorful Spices: Crushed red pepper, dill seed, flavored sea salt, fresh-cracked pepper, toasted sesame seeds, tricolor peppercorns, turmeric
  • Herbs: Basil, chives, dill, thyme; also, chopped scallions
  • Freeze-Dried Vegetables: Corn, edamame, peas, mixed veggies
  • Microgreens: Sprouts or other microgreens, celery leaves or fennel leaves
  • Pickled Vegetables: Baby beets, capers or caperberries, cucumbers, dilly beans, jalapeño, etc. (how to pickle)
  • Seafood: Caviar and roe, boiled shrimp, octopus tentacle, raw baby scallop
  • Seeds: chia seeds, pumpkin seeds (pepita), poppy seeds, sunflower seeds or a mix
  • Spices: Cardamom, curry, dill seed, ginger, fennel seed, toasted/roasted garlic, sesame seed
  • Toppings: Crème fraîche, Greek yogurt, sour cream, savory whipped cream (add a bit of salt and pepper or some whiskey instead of sugar and vanilla)
  • Vertical: A vertical element adds even more panache: asparagus spear, breadstick, dilly bean, rosemary sprig; basil or spinach leaf, etc.
  •  
    VERRINE COOKBOOKS

    If you read French, there’s a larger selection. Here’s what we found in English, but we expect to see more as publishers catch up with the trend”

  • Verrines: Sweet and Savory Parfaits Made Easy [Kindle Edition]
  • Terrines and Verrines
  •   





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