Could you use a home-kitchen-tested recipe for a simple, festive hors d’oeuvre? These little appetizers contain all the flavors of your favorite BLT in one small bite. A crispy toast shell holds a delicious filling of chopped tomatoes, Romaine lettuce, smoky bacon and creamy mayonnaise. A variation of this recipe originally appeared in my cookbook, 101 Things To Do With Bacon.
You can prepare the tiny shells in advance and do most of the prep work for the filling early. I love appetizers that can be made ahead of time, because then you can enjoy your own party instead of fussing in the kitchen.
The crispy shells look special, but they couldn’t be easier. The secret? They’re made with soft sliced bread. You can fill them with other fillings, too — finely chopped salads of chicken, shrimp, or crab are all delicious.
To begin, roll the bread slices firmly with a rolling pin to flatten.
Then, cut out little circles with a 2-inch round cutter. I used a fluted cutter, but you can use a biscuit cutter or cookie cutter.
Use your fingers to gently press the rounds into a mini muffin tin:
Bake at 450 degrees F until the toast cups are just starting to brown around the edges, about 6 minutes. Remove from the oven, cool in the pan for a minute, and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
The shells can be prepared ahead of time and stored in a tightly sealed container for 1 to 2 days.
You can also fry up the crispy bacon bits for the filling a day or two ahead of time, drain and refrigerate.
On the day of the party, all that’s left to do is combine the bacon, chopped Romaine lettuce, chopped tomatoes, mayonnaise and salt and pepper. Just before the party, fill the little toast cups with the filling. Arrange on a platter and serve.
Here’s the recipe:
Mini BLT Cups
6 slices soft white or wheat bread
6 slices finely chopped bacon, cooked and drained
1 cup shredded Romaine lettuce
1 pound ripe tomatoes, cored, seeded and finely chopped
2 to 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F and lightly grease a mini-muffin pan. Flatten each slice of bread with a rolling pin, and cut 4 rounds from each slice with a 2-inch cookie cutter. Press the rounds into the mini-muffin pans to form shallow cups and bake until lightly browned, about 6 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
Combine the bacon, lettuce, and chopped tomato in a large bowl. Stir in mayonnaise, salt and pepper. Fill each bread cup with a generous portion of the BLT mixture and serve immediately. Makes 24 mini BLT cups.