Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Mini Corn Muffin & Lemon Chicken Salad Appetizers

Moist, sweet and wonderfully flavourful, these miniature golden cornbread muffins are delicious on their own but they can also make a fabulous appetizer when filled with this tasty Lemon & Chive Chopped Chicken Salad, although any of your favourite fillings would be great too — perhaps baby shrimp tossed with a tangy lemon mayonnaise, or even a lovely pink crab or salmon salad mixed with dill. The great thing is that both the muffins and the filling can be prepared in advance and then simply assembled at the last minute, making them an easy and darling little appetizer.

Mini Corn Muffins with Lemon & Chive Chicken Salad Appetizer
Makes 48 appetizers

Corn muffins:
1/2 cup melted butter, plus more for greasing
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt

Lemon-Chive Chicken Salad:
4 cups cooked chicken breasts
1 cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp chopped lemon zest

Using a food processor, gently pulse the chicken, mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, zest and chives until the chicken is finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and chill until needed.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Combine the melted butter and sugar in a bowl, and whisk to combine. Add the eggs and stir well to incorporate. Add the buttermilk and whisk until blended. In a separate bowl, combine the baking soda, cornmeal, flour, and salt, and stir to combine. Whisk into the wet ingredients and stir to combine. Grease a mini muffin tin with a little melted butter, and spoon a tablespoon of batter into each muffin cup. Bake for 8-12 minutes, or until the cornbread muffins are golden brown. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to let cool completely.

To assemble, slice the corn muffins in half horizontally and set the tops aside. Fill the bottoms with a rounded tablespoon of chicken salad and replace the tops before serving. Chill until ready to serve.

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