Light pre-dinner Thanksgiving nibbles to accommodate dietary restrictions
Okay... I'm hosting dinner this year for a mixed crowd of adults and children. I want to keep the pre-dinner eats light, so people won't fill up. I am looking for suggestions for appetizers that meet the following criteria:
-Finger food--don't want to have to mess with plates and forks
-Gluten-free, for a family member with celiac disease. Bread or crackers on the side are fine as I have rice crackers he can eat.
-Dairy-free, as many of the guests keep kosher. This rules out cheeses and yogurt- or cheese-based dips.Therefore, also pork- and shellfish-free.
-Some of the items must be nut free as one guest has a nut allergy.
We're tired of hummus. I am thinking marinated olives, sweet potato chips (commercial), maybe a bowl of nut-free trail mix, maybe some roasted chickpeas.
Your spread sounds pretty yummy as is. Another idea...instead of crackers, I like putting a small dollop of different dips/spreads in endive leaves.Ideas:
Tuna tartare- traditional, or there's a wonderful version with citrus zest and kalamata olives
Regular ol' tuna salad or chicken salad, or a vinaigrette chicken salad
Roasted red pepper mayo (heavy on the peppers and spiked with lemon juice)...actually, come to think of it, I bet a red pepper mayo would make a pretty tasty dip for sweet potato chips
Hmn... it doesn't really fit with the flavors you're thinking of, but when you put no wheat and no dairy together, it kindof screams Asian to me. What about doing little Vietnamese spring rolls wrapped in rice paper? I know they often have shrimp but I've made them vegetarian (with tofu or just vegetables) and they're great.
Crudite would also work well... I think preceeding The Dinner with vegetables will help everything get digested much better :)
Lots of good suggestions so far! How about a platter of roasted veggies? Cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, red peppers, asparagus. Roast with olive oil, kosher salt, pepper and garlic (if you don't mind your guests being a bit garlicky), toss with some balsamic for the last couple of minutes of roasting. Set out on a platter and serve room temperature. I'd also add some slow roasted tomatoes there, too. Just made those for the first time recently and I'm completely addicted.
You could do all the veggies the day before, keep in fridge, then just take them out a couple of hours before serving to let them come to room temp.
I love the suggestion for the white bean dip/spread!
An assortment of olives and pickles is always nice, would that be okay?
Also, here's a nice Artichoke and Tomato Tapenade for spreading on flatbread/baguette:
Artichoke & Sun Dried Tomato Tapenade
1 jar (6 ounces) marinated artichoke hearts, drained
6 sun-dried tomatoes (if packed in oil, drain them first)
1 clove garlic, pressed
2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1/8 teaspoon salt
Finely chop the artichoke hearts and sun-dried tomatoes; combine with the garlic and parsley. If mixture seems too dry, add 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil. Let stand in fridge for 1 hour so that the flavors can meld. Serve with flatbread/crackers/baguette.