French for “outside the work”, hors d’oeuvres are commonly served in very small, bite-sized portions as an appetizer before a meal or sampler for food-consorts. Usually served on a large dish held by a waiter, butler or even in a buffet table. Because they can consist of meat, poultry, fish, shellfish, vegetables, grains, pasta, fruits baked goods and sauces; there is no end to the possibilities when creating a treat.
There are savory and sweet hors d’oeuvres as well as coming in hot or cold. Generally cold hors d’oeuvres can be divided into five ranged categories based on preparation, ingredient or presentation. The different styles include: canapés, crudités, dips, caviar, sushi and sashimi.
The Guidelines for preparing hors d’oeuvres consist of four mainly. They should be small and consumed in one to two bites. They should be flavorful as well seasoned without being overpowering. They should be visually attractive. They should complement whatever foods may follow without duplication their flavors.
Canapés are tiny open-faced sandwiches, classically. Constructed from a base, a spread and about one or two garnishes, there are many modern interpretations to the style. The most common canapé base is a thin slice of bread cut into an interesting shape, like a triangle or crescent, and toasted.