There are traditions that are renewed and rediscovered to become a trend, revised with a new way of presentation and enjoyment: this is the case of appetizers to be eaten with the hands, which today are called finger food. From sandwiches to savory puffs, it is no longer just about taste, but an art of presenting what has become a complete meal, in miniature.
Finger food: don’t call them appetizers
Finger food is basically mini food that is eaten exclusively with hands, this is where its name comes from: dishes ranging from appetizers to desserts that are brought to the mouth with fingers, without the need of using cutlery.
Finger food origins
Finger food was born in America with Prohibition: although cocktail party were already popular, it is during this time in history that finger food became the protagonist of meetings in secret places called speakeasies. In order to avoid any attention, small quantities of food were served among upper middle class people and consumed with their hands: sandwiches, jellies and pickles were passed from hand to hand during socializing. A type of presentation which also has French origins: finger food, in the eighteenth century, was called “canapés”, a way of saying sofa and, in fact, condiments are placed on croutons and slices of bread just as people sitting on sofas. Going further back in time, Romans ate lying down, without using any cutlery as it was also impossible with the position they held. They therefore used their hands, where silver thimbles were often worn to avoid getting dirty. From secret salons to the most prestigious ones to arrive to the modern and innovative meaning of finger food, born in 2002, with the use of the term at Expogast in Salzburg.
The right container allows you to create elegant contrasts, MPS porcelain Finger line
A successful combination in miniature
The success of finger food is the combination of several factors, starting with the frenetic rhythm of today’s society, which often sees meals eaten quickly, without stopping at a table, both when at home and on work days. However, it is definitely not a matter of renouncing to quality and refinement. On the contrary, many starred chefs are proposing finger food which becomes a style of consuming food and sharing it.
It is precisely because the bite is small that it must be even tastier and more flavorful, capable of conveying as much as a whole plate can usually convey, if not more than one course. In short, they are not simple “appetizers” or ” starters”, but elaborate presentations that offer a multi-sensory experience.
There is also a growing interest in the small things in the kitchen: think of the famous YouTube channels that get millions of views for videos of people cooking the most different foods with miniature tools, a trend born in Japan, but which has been followed around the world thanks to TikTok. The habits born during the lockdown of 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the changes in lifestyles and the ease of consumption have increased the interest in finger food, which, especially in the United States, is increasingly requested also for children, obviously with different preparations compared to the finger food of buffets and aperitifs. Not to be underestimated is the psychological aspect that sees the achievement of a sense of satisfaction by tasting something small, appreciating it more. Empirical evidence of the interest in finger food: restaurants dedicated exclusively to this type of food are on the rise and they are refined and chic, which have little to do with sandwiches prepared at home.
How to serve finger food: the right combination
Finger food is much more than a moment of sharing: the presentation itself is part of the consumption of this type of food. For this reason it must be taken care of in order to create a composition with a pleasant visual impact with the right combinations of colors, shapes, aromas and flavors. Tips for a presentation that can amaze and make customers and guests’ mouths water concern not only the ingredients chosen for the buffet of finger food, which must satisfy the most diverse tastes, but also the choice of containers that can make a difference.
A touch of uniformity
Finger food presentation, as mentioned above, is not only about the food itself, but also about non-food items. When preparing finger food, it is important to remember that it will be seen from above and therefore prepare the set up in this sense. When all the elements on the table are uniform, the whole will look more sophisticated and elegant. Better to play with the colors of the food, rather than those of the containers, so as not to risk compromising the overall chromaticity and overlapping too many shades. White or black bases are perfect for enhancing the colors of vegetables, pastas, cheeses and sweets, to which you can add decorations of sauces or herbs to give the final touch. A surprise ingredient can add color and even more creativity to the presentation.
The spoon Finger welcomes delicate and tasty dishes with elegance
The ideal containers for finger food: the Finger line
Just as there are specific items for serving pizza or plates for butter and sushi, finger food should be presented on specially made items. At the same time, to complete the harmony created by the colors, it is important to serve finger food on containers of the same material. The porcelain Finger line is perfect for creating a sublime harmony between the practicality of food that can be eaten with the fingers and the refinement of a stylish presentation. Designed to amaze and let you savor the moment even in the frenetic pace of today’s society, when time is short but the search for culinary specialties enclosed in the finger food is strong. Just as every delicacy prepared by the chef is unique and created individually to represent a complete experience for customers and guests, each item for serving finger food in the Finger line has also been studied and created by MPS Porcellane with the use that Ho.Re.Ca. professionals will make of it in mind: all the advantages of porcelain, including resistance and dishwasher-safe, Made in Italy quality, and the most functional design are combined in original and innovative saucers, cups, spoons and bowls.
Bongo Finger can include samples of mousse or velvety soups, in a soft hollow that can make an excellent presentation even more original, while Armchair Finger comfortably welcomes shrimp and chips in an embrace of sophistication. Hexagon Finger and Flower Finger play with shapes to give life to puzzles of genuine creativity, while Hat Finger, Small Cup Countersunk and Drop Finger collect flavors of exotic or traditional tastes. Here are different tastes and textures on finger spoons, also ideal for desserts and diced fruit. The same items in the Finger line are also available in the Ghisa version, still in porcelain but with a more rustic, matte finish. A suggestion? Pair a shiny finger flower with a matte one, or a drop, spoon, bongo, hat, armchair, cup or hexagon item for an even more unique effect. All finger containers can also be presented on a tray or plate, such as rectangular tray, Vassoi line, or, why not, even rectangular sushi plate, Ghisa line, momentarily changing their original purpose. Arranging all the items following a circular or uniform pattern is an excellent technique to improve the aesthetic aspect of the finger food presentation.
Drop Finger, Ghisa line, presented with the elegance of black and the soft color of fragrant delicacies
Porcelain containers for every style
Whether it’s a welcome cocktail with starters, or a dessert at the end of a formal meal, or presenting multiple courses for a full dinner, the porcelain finger food containers in the Finger line, also in the Ghisa version, are suitable for any mood. Much better than disposable plates, more sustainable and advantageous, porcelain items are able to complete a presentation of color and shape harmonies in which fragrances and flavors are celebrated in a show that will leave a mark. MPS has been by your side for over thirty years to help you enhance the uniqueness of your dishes.