Cooks & Partners Top Ten Favourite Winter Canapes

Winter is all about comforting food, warmth and indulgence, and when it comes to entertaining the food you choose makes all the difference.  Guests are coming from all over and no doubt braving the elements to get there, so tantalise their taste buds and help to make it well worth the effort.

The Cooks & Partners team of chefs and event managers have toiled, tasted, scrutinised and tasted again to bring you the most mouth-watering winter menu delights.  We want to share some of these with you.

Here’s our personal Top 10 favourite winter canapés and why:

1.  Acorn fed ham with a fresh fig and rocket salad and lemon mascarpone cream
Packed full of flavour and colour. A wheat free canapé using ham as a base, so perfect when catering for diverse guests. It’s a bit different, it’s fun and we always think there is something festive about figs!

  2.  Walnut sour dough with chicken liver parfait and quince and port jelly
Anything with port makes me think of winter indulgence, good suppers and warm houses…

3.  Bacon and camembert croquettes with date and fig chutney
Warm, filling, winter comfort. Something to get you through those Christmas party hangovers!

4.  Classic lobster bisque with a roasted onion shard served in porcelain shots
A true classic. Warming, smells divine and has a lovely rich consistency. Shots make for just the correct quantity for a perfect hit of luxury ingredients. Acts as a lovely hand warmer as well!

5.  Mini smoked haddock scotch egg with a chunky heritage tomato dip
Something fun for everyone. When halved, the yellow of the egg looks fun and vibrant. Served warm makes for great tasty winter comfort. Interactive food with the chunky dip.

6.  Quail eggs with an assortment of infused dipping salts
Should be in ‘The cheat’s guide to canapés’ extremely straight forward but looks absolutely wonderful and satisfies all taste buds as you are able to offer assortments of salts. A very chic and elegant looking canapé. Fun and interactive. Perfect canapé to serve at home. Healthier option for the winter season and veggie friendly. Experiment away!

7.  Ashed goats cheese bon bon with a chive and walnut crust and sour damson relish
The smell of cooked walnuts always makes me think of winter and Christmas time. Combined with one of my favourite things of all time – goat’s cheese, and finished with a pretty damson relish, makes for completely perfect canapé! Served on a crystal stick which also adds to the visual effect.

8.  Wild mushroom arancini with roasted garlic, thyme and lemon butter sauce
Excellent vegetarian option. Arancini, are stuffed rice balls which are coated with breadcrumbs and fried.  Warming, packed with flavour and interactive with the dip. Garlic and thyme is a great winter combination and smells wonderful.

9.  Peanut butter whoopee pies with salted caramel
Wouldn’t be winter without a few extra pounds! This is a mouthful of total naughtiness but complete happiness. Melt in the mouth flavours, dusting of icing sugar adds to a winter vibe. Very easy to serve but disappear quickly! Great for younger generation and even better for older as brings back childhood days of tasty, naughty sweet things!

10.  Sour cherry Bakewell tartlets
Fun twist on a classic dish. Served with bright pink chopped cherries so looks very pretty and dainty. Completely delicious and oozing with incredible flavour

“And what about drinks?” I hear you cry….

In the winter rather the serve a cold soft drink on arrival, why not have something hot to warm up your guests? My favourite option here is a hot spiced fresh orange juice. Packed full of vitamin c to help fight off those winter colds, it’s tasty, seasonal and something completely different. I usually add honey, ginger and nutmeg which gives it an amazing aroma. Suitable for all ages and alcohol free. A nice alternative to a hot chocolate or mulled wine and certainly healthier!  

For more great ideas please get in touch with us at Cooks & Partners on 020 77315282 or

Celebrate in Style at Wellington Arch this Christmas

Iconic Christmas Venue

Iconic Christmas Venue

Cooks and Partners have teamed up with Wellington Arch to bring you exclusive packages for Christmas 2013, offering all-inclusive packages from £110.00 per person + VAT

This venue offers a superbly intimate space for exclusive Christmas Celebrations with capacity up to 80 guests for receptions and 36 guests for dinner

Standing tall right in the heart of the West End, Wellington Arch has one of the capital’s most fashionable addresses, best locations and the historic looks, addiing elegant styling to surprise and delight your guests. Those invited to soar to its summit cannot fail to be impressed!

Quadriga Gallery

Quadriga Gallery

Package includes;
Venue hire
Sparkling wine reception, Chosen menu option
Unlimited bottled beer, house wine and soft drinks
Event management and professional staff reception
Staffed cloakroom facilities
All serving equipment and glassware
Furniture applicable to your chosen package

Delicious canapes to start off the evening


Reception packages £110 + VAT per person (minimum 50 guests)
Dinner packages from £230 + VAT per person (Minimum 24 guests)

A Celebrity DJ Wedding – Inspiration for your wedding at Chelsea Old Town Hall


Full room shotAfter months of preparation involving tastings, site visits, meetings, phone calls and lots of emails, the day had finally arrived. Chelsea Old Town Hall is the perfect location for a wedding and it was lovely that the couple decided to hold the ceremony and reception within the hall.

Guests started arriving from 1.30 pm to the Small Hall, which had been beautifully styled, raffia carpet and thousands of rose petals lined the aisle, chairs were covered in lovely ivory covers, and delicate vases adorned with tree branches created an impressive backdrop. As guests waited for the bride to enter, a string quartet played, followed by a Ukulele duo during the signing of the register.

Flounder & beatroot fishcakeAs the ceremony ended, guests moved to the adjacent hall where they were greeted with drinks of Hendricks, cucumber & tonic and Prosecco. Canapés of flounder and beetroot bhaji with saffron yoghurt and wasabi seared beef & watermelon with pink ginger and coriander were circulated as guests mingled.

Table centre & decoration

Personalised touches

A toast master announced dinner and guests took their seats. Round tables had been styled traditionally with monarch white linen and silver ivory Camelot chairs. Beautiful table centres on mirrored plates incorporating purples, greens & pinks flowers complimented the grandeur of the room and dozens of delicate glass vases were filled with tea lights. Personal and quirky touches were added to each table with sparklers, sweets adorned with the couple’s names and name badges were used in replacement of place cards.

Rack of lambA delicious three course wedding breakfast was served starting with warm smoked haddock fishcake with watercress & a lemon mayonnaise, followed by roast rack of lamb with garlic and mint jus, crushed new potatoes and chickpea cake. Guests were then treated to plate of mini puddings consisting of spiced apple muffin with clotted cream, chocolate mocha pots and shortbread with pear and hazelnut cream.

The real surprise for guests came after pudding when actors posing as waiting staff erupted into song. The hall became alive and soon the entire room were singing and dancing away. As the speeches ended evening guests arrived and the band began to play.

Evening guests were entertained with music and dancing. A photo booth proved extremely popular and a fun way to add to the memories of the day. Later on a magnificent cheese display and finger buffet were laid out for guests to enjoy. The wedding ended on a high at midnight with lots of very happy guests!

Summer is Coming….Really It Is!

Is that a hint of sunshine I see? ….not quite, but with the daffodils are trying to push their way through and the crocuses are in flower, I feel that spring is just about here and hopefully summer won’t be far behind. I’m sure this is what we are all hoping and judging by the summer events coming in, it seems we are all feeling positive summer vibes! Bring on the sunshine, I say…

If you are looking for the perfect summer venue for 2013 then look no further as we have some fantastic ideas to suit a range of styles and requirements, both private and corporate events in London. And not only that we have some fabulous creative menus for you to choose from which will tantalise your taste buds and keep your guests satiated while supping our fresh summer cocktails.
Creative summer food bowls Sumptuous desserts Summer Cocktails

Museum of London
A gem in the heart of the city accommodating from 30 to 600 guests throughout the various gallery spaces, of which the Terrace Galleries offer unique outside space. The Terrace Galleries are perfect for accommodating reception, hog roasts and barbeques for up to 150 guests.

PTerraceandGardenackage start from £52.50 including a sparkling wine and Pimms reception, your chosen menu a nd unlimited house wine, beer and soft drinks amongst other things….contact the C&P events team for further details and to reserve your preferred date before it’s too late!

Wellington Arch
This is one of the most iconic venues in the heart of London, and wellington-arch-lit-in-purpleone to truly impress your guests for your summer event. Whether it’s a wine tasting dinner or a sophisticated canapé reception and presentation, this is a perfect setting with doors opening directly onto two viewing balconies, set beneath the largest bronze sculpture in Western Europe – with exclusive views across Buckingham Palace gardens and Westminster to Big Ben, the London Eye and the Shard. The Quadriga Gallery offers additional fascination for guests.

The Orangery Garden Reception3The Orangery, Holland Park
Set in the beautiful famous Holland Park, the Orangery Gallery was formerly the summer ballroom of the fourth Lord Holland. It offers superb summer event space looking out over the rose gardens and park, and with direct access to the pristine lawn. Accommodating up to 150 in the Orangery, and more with the option for gazebos or marquee on the lawn, this offers a flexible setting for day and evening events including seated dinners, canapé and food bowls receptions or how about a traditional afternoon tea party with dainty sandwiches and tasty morsels, freshly baked cakes and an ice-cream cart with all the toppings you can imagine.

Leighton House MuseumLeighton House Museums famous Arab Hall
Leighton House Museum offers an outstanding collection of High Victorian and Oriental art with the atmosphere and intimacy of a private home. And with it’s wonderful garden it is perfect for summer entertaining. The Arab Hall and decorative tiles lend this venue to a Middle Eastern themed menu of canapés and food bowls for up to 150, while upstairs the venue brings you back to a traditional English feel and the opportunity to feature the great British summer menu with a dinner for up to 80 guests.

Eltham Palace & GardensEltham Palace
With a series of linked Art Deco rooms, a stunning medieval Great Hall and 19 acres of moated gardens all exclusively yours, Eltham Palace will lift your corporate event into a truly unique and unforgettable occasion. With capacity up to 200 for dinner dance or 300 for a reception and access straight into the extensive grounds the event opportunities are endless. How about a corporate family fun day with lots of fun activities for the big kids and little kids, team games, themed food stalls and a barbeque feast? Or if that’s not for you, a White-Tie summer party with elegance, sophistication and panache to suit this stunning historic venue…the choice is yours!

So, what will it be for this year’s summer party? Get in touch with our fabulous events team to cement those ideas and get your summer party booked before it’s too late!

Tel: 020 7731 5282

Get Creative with this Yummy Valentine’s Day Treat

It’s Valentine’s Day looming and you’re thinking hard to find something special for your someone special…How about these sensuously rich Red Velvet Cupcakes?  A little passion in a cupcake…made by your own fair hands!

Cooks & Partners Red Velvet Cupcake for your Valentine

Cooks & Partners Red Velvet Cupcake for your Valentine

Makes 12 frosted cupcakes

60g / 2½ oz soft butter
1 large free range egg
150g / 4½ oz caster sugar
10g / ½ oz cocoa
3 tsp red food colouring
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
120ml / 4 ½ fl oz buttermilk
30ml / 1 fl oz vegetable oil
150g / 5½ oz plain flour
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp white wine vinegar

300g icing sugar, sifted
50g butter at room temperature
125g cream cheese, chilled

Extra toppings – fresh raspberries or strawberries


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12-cup muffin pans with cupcake papers.

  1. In a large bowl sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder
  2. Add the oil, buttermilk, egg, food colouring, vinegar, and vanilla gently beat together with a handheld electric mixer until smooth and thoroughly combined.
  3. Divide the mix into the cupcake tins. Bake in oven for about 20-22 minutes
  4. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

  1. In a large bowl gently beat together with a handheld electric mixer the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar on low speed, beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy.
  2. spoon the frosting onto of the cup cake and spread to the edges and make a swirl patron into the middle

Garnish with fresh raspberry or strawberry.

ENJOY...With Love From Cooks & Partners!

Cooks & Partners Red Velvet Cupcake for your Valentine