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pals coming for drinks and...What else?

I'm thinking of Mexican(ish) appetizers. Empanadas, a spicy cheese dip with tortillas and some shrimp with what kind of dip/sauce/kebab? I'm open to other ideas and recipes if you have any thoughts. Thanks to all.

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  1. http://www.astray.com/recipes/?show=B...

    i've made the above black bean fritters and they are delicious!

    1. How about toasting some nuts with chili and garlic powders on them or even a bit of sugar. Bar nuts are always a hit! Oh, and don't forget the Classic Chex Mix...again, you could add some chili powder to spice it up.

      1. Why not go for like a fusion satay or something?

        You could marinate chicken in a mole style sauce, and bbq on a stick. For dipping, you could take some sour cream or mayo and mix it with your favourite fiesta-type spices - chili powder, cumin, fresh coriander, oregano, maybe even some salsa. Mmmmmm.....could be good. :)

        1. I'm not a big fan of Mexican but, I do love nachos. Here's what I do: Spread tortilla chips on a cookie sheet, open chili and lime refried beans and pour over tortillas, open a can of pinto beans and pour over the refried beans, sprinkle with cheese and bake for 15 minutes or so. Then add sour cream to the top, your favorite salsa, fresh chopped toms, avocado chunks and whatever else your heart desires, wella - great nachos. I'd even leave them on the cookie sheet and put in the middle of the table. Decorate with sprinkling of chopped cilantro or italian leaf parsley. Yummo! :)KQ

          1. if you can grill the shrimp, how bout jerk? no wait, that wouldn't really go with your south of the border theme.....maybe lime and tequila with chili spices?

            if you just want a sauce or dip for the shrimp, maybe some type of aoli using latin american spices?

            1. usual reaction to this is having one's eyes roll up to the back of their heads....take a half slice of thin smoky bacon, wrap it around a pitted date, insert toothpick. make a bunch, roast in 400 degree oven in shallow pan until bacon is crisp. For an extra kick, make a reduced dipping sauce of Kaluha, cream and thai chili.

              1. Salsa Fresca is always a hit, if a bit labor intensive. Let me know if you need the recipe.

                3 Replies
                1. re: librarian

                  Your recipe would be great if you can find the time to post it! Thanks to everyone for the terrific ideas.

                  1. re: Michelle in T.O.

                    Salsa Fresca

                    Time (start to finish) - about 60 to 90 minutes plus 1 hour rest time.

                    6 tomatoes (the reddest tomatoes you can find but not roma) - chopped into pieces about the size of your thumb nail and de-seeded
                    1/2 onion (your preference) - chopped into pieces about the size of your pinky nail and separated (very important or guests get a huge chunk of onion in their mouth)
                    1 clove garlic (more if everyone likes garlic) - minced
                    1 bunch cilantro - rinsed and rough chopped (I usually only use the leaves - time consuming but a better taste for me)
                    2 small jalapeno pepper - deseeded, deveined and diced (sized about a quarter of your pinky nail)
                    Juice of one lime
                    Freshly milled black pepper - to taste
                    salt - to taste

                    1. Put tomatoes in bowl and add salt (brings out the flavour of the tomatoes and doing it at this stage means you won't oversalt the salsa). Mix.
                    2. Add onions, cilantro, garlic, jalapeno, black pepper and lime juice. Mix well.
                    3. Rest for 1 hour before serving.

                    If you have anything left over (my husband swears its better the next day but then you're getting out of "fresca" territory) you can use it with grilled chicken or in burritos.

                    1. re: librarian

                      You want some labour-saving advice? Use your food processor, but do so judiciously......

                      Taking librarian's recipe, follow these steps:
                      1. Drop the jalopeno (quartered) into a moving food processor (down the chute. Scrape the sides.
                      2. Add the quartered onion and the coriander(I use a whole small onion), and pulse until it's in little pieces.
                      3. Quarter your tomatoes (I don't seed them, but obviously, you could - I use 2 pounds tomatoes) and put them in the food processor. Pulse once, maybe twice.
                      4. Pour the mixture into the bowl, add salt, lime juice, garlic and black pepper.

                      It takes like 1/4 the time and you can still have a nice un-food-processor-like texture if you only add the tomatoes at the last second and be VERY judicious in your pulsing. :)

                2. Holy cow. What time should we come over? :)

                  1. you can also pre-assemble quesadillas, then pop them in the oven, slice and plate. garnish with chopped scallions, sour cream and guacamole.

                    1. love the little chinese scallion pancakes, placed together stuffed with chicken or pork then dip eaten with plum, hoisin, and honey with cilantro or bottled sweet and sour hot chile dipping sauce....