The Christmas Eve chili caper (berries)
December 4, 2018 6:28 PM   Subscribe

What are some creative things I can do with a lot of caper berries? A lot, a lot. Like, a large glass jar of them that I inexplicably received from my parents for Christmas last year.

We're hosting Christmas Eve again, and it's going to be chili night again, as per tradition. But I've got these caper berries, and I kind of wouldn't mind getting my parents (and the rest of us) to eat some.

As for garnishing drinks, nobody in the family is a martini fan. Bloody Marys, possibly, but we're talking Christmas Eve dinner here.

Capers and caper berries would go well with Greek, Italian and Sicilian foods, but I'm predicting that caper berries and chili just don't mix. Apart from putting them on a plate with some toothpicks, what are some creative things I could do with them that could work with dinner?
posted by emelenjr to Food & Drink (9 answers total)
Smoked salmon, creme fraiche and sliced caperberries with a squeeze of lemon, either as they are as a starter, or on blinis as a canape? If they're reasonably sharp than cream cheese might do instead of creme fraiche.
posted by tavegyl at 6:42 PM on December 4, 2018 [4 favorites]

Or if you're making a big green salad with a vinaigrette to go beside the chili, chop the caperberries roughly and add them in, along with some toasted nuts and soft herbs. It would be a refreshing counterpoint to the chili, I would think.
posted by tavegyl at 6:48 PM on December 4, 2018 [1 favorite]

The only way I like capers is fried. Just pat them dry and pan fry them in a little olive oil until crispy. They make a nice garnish (although i've never had them on chili. )
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 7:04 PM on December 4, 2018 [2 favorites]

Caper Berry Tapenade? Roughly a third caper berries (these are the big ones, right?) to two thirds whatever olives are at the olive bar at the supermarket, a clover or two of garlic to taste, pinch of thyme, bit of lemon rind, squeeze of lemon, olive oil to make it pretty, hot pepper flakes if you like that.

As an appetizer?

I've never done this with caper berries, but with capers, but i'd think it might be good.

Or: pickle tray, with gherkins and so on.

Green eyed monster's fried capers would be neat to try -- you could also do fried green olives which is like a traditional tapas recipe....
posted by A Terrible Llama at 4:51 AM on December 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

Smoked salmon, sour cream, capers on crackers or thin bread is a fabulous appetizer. You could mix it up and make it a dip My grocery usually has smoked salmon trim pieces at a fairly affordable price. This would also be a fine Christmas breakfast on bagels.

There's a classic dinner party dish, chicken marbella that makes good use of capers. I substitute dried apricots for the prunes.

Now I want to try fried capers and fried olives.
posted by theora55 at 6:47 AM on December 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

I got curious and googled for this - someone over on Reddit had a similar question, and someone else had the idea to include them on a charcuterie board. A charcuterie board is a good idea in and of itself, and that would let you put out a little dish of the berries as part of it.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:03 AM on December 5, 2018 [3 favorites]

Invite me over, put the caper berries in a dish, and turn your back for a few seconds. You will no longer be troubled by an excess of caper berries.

If that is impractical, follow EmpressCallipygos's advice and add them to a charcuterie board, and hope that one of your friends is as much of a fiend for caper berries as I am.
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:35 AM on December 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


Yup, I would tend toward appetizers/charcuterie. Throwing actual caper berries in pasta sauce is like making a rusty nail with Balvenie 18 - it'll be delicious, but kind of a waste.

I've had a delicious antojito that was basically an anchovy wrapped around a caper berry with a toothpick through it; similar would work with serrano ham/prosciutto/cotto.
posted by aspersioncast at 7:50 AM on December 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

Also, PSA caper berries are the fruit, capers are the bud.
posted by aspersioncast at 7:59 AM on December 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

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