If you have a mini popover pan - the kind that makes 12, I split them lengthwise, fill with a mix of stuff (little shrimp, sauteed mushrooms & onion, diced chicken, etc) usually top it with about 1-2 tsp of canned lobster bisque, and then add some shredded cheese. Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes until the cheese is starting to melt.
The popovers themselves can be made ahead, split, scooped out and frozen. The totally prepared ones keep 5-8 hours in the fridge
another easy one is jumbo shrimp, big slices of Vidallia Onion, Pineapple Rings (cut in half) that is marinated for at least 4 hours but better overnight in the following:
3TBS Lime Juice
1/2 cup Mirin
1/2 cup Marsala wine
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
capful cider vinegar
tsp minced garlic
tsp Lawry's season salt (or reg salt)
TBS Dried Cilantro
1/2 tsp ground ginger
The juice from the pineapple cans
2 scallions diced
I serve it in a glass bowl with lots of wooden skewers. Usually I get Belgian Endive leaves for folks to put the skewed bit on, but sourdough bread rounds would work as well
Note.....if you don't have one or more of the items don't sweat it It adapts easliy to "subs". If your adventurous, you can add some hot sauce of your choice to the mix
Spinach & artichoke dip w/ corn chips
roll out slices of plain white wonderbread (until pancake flat.)
Make a mixture equal parts fresh pureed mushrooms and cream cheese.
Add salt to taste.
Lightly toast slices.
Spread mushroom mixture on toast slices.
Roll up like a pinwheel and slice.
Fondue (savory & sweet) are also a fun/delicious idea.
One of my favorite appetizers is stuffed quahogs (a hard shell clam), but they might be too much effort. They can be made ahead of time and frozen. If you want the recipe, let me know.
For an easy, decadent dessert:
1.5 cups heavy cream
18 oz. chocolate morsels
1 prepared graham pie crust
Bring the cream to a boil, remove from heat and stir in the chocolate until fully melted. Pour into the crust and chill for 4 hours. Serve with aa little bit of whip cream and a few fresh raspberries.
LAYERED ASIAN DIP
I made this for my niece. Just wonderful.
1 cup cubed cooked chicken
2/3 cup shredded carrots
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 TB soy sauce
1/4 tsp ground ginger
30 wonton skins (about 3 1/4 inch squares)
2 TBS packed brown sugar
2 tsps cornstarch
1/2 cup water
2 TBS ketchup
1 TB rice wine vinegar
2 TSPS Worchestershire sauce
4 drops red pepper sauce
2 packages (8 oz. each) 1/3-less fat cream cheese (Neufchatel)
1 TB milk
1/3 cup unsalted cashews, chopped
4 medium green onions, sliced (1/4 cup)
1. In small bowl, mix topping ingredients. Cover and refrigerate 2 to 4 hours.
2. Meanwhile, heat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut each wonton skin in half into two triangles. On 2 large ungreased cookie sheets, arrange wonton skins in single layer. Spray wontons with cooking spray. Bake about 6 minutes or until crisp.; cool.
3. In 1-quart saucepan, mix brown sugar and cornstarch. Gradually beat in remaining sace ingredients with wire whisk. Cook over medium heat about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally with wire whisk, until thick. Cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes.
4. In medium bowl, beat cream cheese and milk with electric mixer on medium speed. Spread on serving platter at least 10 inches in diamter. Just before serving spoon topping over cheese; drizzle with sauce and sprinkle with cashews and green onions. Serve with crisp wontons.
30 servings (2 TB dip and 2 wontons each)
4.5 g fat
160 mg sodium
1/2 starch; 1 fat
1/2 carb choice
Cooks' notes: I used frozen thighs and cooked them in the microwave; I used julienned carrots and chopped them into shorter pieces; I used parsley herb blend in the tube, it's more expensive but it lasts longer; I always use fresh garlic, for me there is no equal substitute ever; I could only find round wontons so we had half moons instead of triangles which was just fine. For curved wontons (which looke nicer) slightly crumple a piece of foil and place on cookie sheet, spray with cooking spray and arrange wonton skins in single layer. Spray wontons with cooking spray and bake as directed. Be very careful on timing, I burned an entire tray and had to throw them out. We didn't keep the leftover wontons ~~ I don't think they keep. The next day we had leftover dip with cucumber rounds. I did not beat cream cheese and milk with mixer, just used a fork on room temp cream cheese, worked fine.
How fun, I love hors d'oeuvres parties! I think I love hors d'oeuvres more than the main course sometimes.... here are some of my favourite ideas:
- Mmm... agree with lexpatti... bacon-wrapped water chestnuts are such a nice twist! I also love prosciutto-wrapped asparagus spears (crisped up in the oven).
-Stuffed mushrooms with chopped spinach, parmesan, and bacon: I use frozen spinach... after squeezing every last drop of water out of it, saute it with a little olive oil and garlic, then add a generous splash of light cream, grated parmesan, and chopped cooked bacon. Salt & Pepper to taste. Stuff large mushroom caps with the mixture, top with some more parmesan, then pop in the oven until mushrooms are warmed through.
- New (and seasonal!) favourite: Oven-rosted figs with goat cheese and peppered honey. Cut figs into "flowers" (basically quarter it, but leave 1/2" at the bottom uncut so the quarters stay attached), then gently stuff a bit of goat cheese into the center. Place on cookie sheet, drizzle with honey, and crack black pepper all over it. Roast in a 350-degree oven until hot and cheese is soft (maybe about 10 mins). So elegant looking, and awesome on a salad too!
- Patatas Bravas (tapas-style zesty potatoes): There are doubtless more authentic ways to do this, but this is quick and tasty. Toss 1-inch cubed potatoes with olive oil to coat. Roast potatoes (single layer on sheet) until golden brown. Meanwhile, saute some minced garlic and minced onion in olive oil until soft. Add to this 1 part mayo and 1 part ketchup. Mix until all combined. Add tabasco/cayenne and thyme to taste. This sauce can be made ahead of time (I find the flavour improves after a few hours in the fridge, just reheat the sauce before serving) Toss potatoes with sauce, and serve on a big plate with lots of toothpicks.
- Sundried Tomato Baked Brie: Take a round of brie and pop it in a oven-safe ramekin (should not be too much bigger than the brie). Spoon generous amounts of sundried tomato onto it, and drizzle with the oil the tomatoes were packed in (the kind with flavoured/herbed oil is especially delicious). You can peel the top rind off the Brie to help it absorb the flavour more, but you don't have to. Bake until all is bubbly and melted, and serve piping hot with crusty bread or crackers.
- Cheese Straws (kind of tacky, but also fun and snacky, plus everyone goes crazy for these). Take a can of puff pastry (e.g., Pillsbury crescent rolls, or you could make your own if you are ambitious) and unroll it. Pinch together the seams, and roll the whole sheet out into a large rectangle. Generously sprinkle grated cheese (I use cheddar + parm) on the short half of the rectangle. Fold the other half up and press the edges together (it is helpful to leave a bit of a border when you are spreading your cheese, to help things stick). You now have sort of an envelope of pastry dough w/ cheese in the middle. Use a pizza cutter (or kitchen shears) to cut narrow ribbons starting from the folded edge up to the opposite edge. To twist, place a ribbon on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Press down one end of the ribbon, then gently twist the ribbon all the way up -- you will end up with a loose corkscrew, and be able to see bits of cheese in the twists, it's an attractive effect. When you reach the end of the ribbon, press down on the end to "set" the twist. Repeat with all the ribbons and sprinkle a bit more cheese on top if desired. Bake according to the directions on your can of pastry dough, or until golden brown. Cool for a few minutes on the sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Can be made 1-2 days in advance and stored in an airtight container
Oven-roasted spiced chickpeas are a great "bar snack", and a good alternative to the usual peanuts/mixed nuts. I take canned chickpeas, drain really really well, pat dry with paper towels, and toss with whatever spices I feel like (usually a cayenne/paprika/salt mix, but anything goes). Roast in a med-low (250-300) oven until the chickpeas are crunchy.... be patient, as this can take an hour. Give the pan a good shake every once in a while to help them along. When crispy, take them out, toss them in a wee bit of good olive oil, and add more seasoning if necessary. Tasty and relatively nutritious!
- For dessert, I love a light chocolate mousse (could be spooned into those plastic champagne saucers for a nice presentation), maybe along with some berries.
- Bite-sized cheesecakes are delish and cute too... use mini-muffin tins w/ liners, I find they are much more forgiving to make than a full-sized cheesecake, and you don't have to use a crust if you don't want to. (If you do, try Nilla wafers, or use the bottom of a 2nd mini-muffin pan to press your crumb crust into the bottom of your pan). Just use your favourite cheesecake recipe (I hesitate to suggest one since I am no cheesecake expert). You could also use a plain cheesecake and flavour with a dollop of jam/presereves to make a bunch of different kinds.
- Also agree that fruit salad might just hit the spot if you serve a lot of heavier appetizers... maybe with a Chambord (or some other fruit liqueur) glaze?
Anyway, there's been lots of great suggestions, hope your party's a hit!
roasted pecans. Melt some butter and add your favorite salt. Put half in a bowl with your favorite salt, and toss in half the pecans. Swish around until the pecans are coated. Put onto a sheet pan. Put the remaining butter in the same bowl and add some cayenne pepper. Swish the remaining pecans and put on a separate sheet pan. Roast in the oven until the tops are beginning to become golden, and flip the nuts. Cook until just crispy. I have made these at many oven temps; other items determine what that temp is.
Something about these nuts is addicting, yet, they are so easy to make.
Miniature chicken/beef satay - two bite size pieces of chicken/beef skewered on those hors d'oeurves picks. Simple marinade: ginger, garlic, soy sauce, scallions, brown sugar, sesame oil (optional), dash of vinegar. For quick and easy fix, simply pansear/panfry/bake the meats and then, thread it to skewer. You can serve it with store bought sauce, or peanut sauce.
Fried Eggrolls or Cold Ricepaper rolls or Assorted Dumplings - the filling can be anything you like. Light to heavy.
Puff Pastry - you can buy a couple box of these. Cut it to different shapes. Fill/ top it with different fillings. Savory as carmelized mushrooms and onions. Goat cheese and roasted red pepper. Olives and toasted pine nuts. Or sweet, carmelized apple with cinnamon. Berries, etc.
Panfried Mac and Cheese - sinful but yum!! :) Make ahead your favorite Mac and Cheese - but it has to be those that is dense. Cut to squares or triangles, dip in eggs mixture, roll on bread crumb (panko is great), deep fry or panfry.
Baked mini crabcakes - patties can be shaped few hours ahead. Just dip and roll like Mac and Cheese - slide to 375 degree oven.
Baked mini croquettes - many variations of this. But you can never go wrong with mashed potato, chives/dill, chopped up ham. Mix it with egg for binding and panfry until crispy both sides. You can spoon (or use piping bag and tube) some red-peppered jelly as garnish on top of croquttes.
Have Fun!! :)
I like tortilla espanoal. It's best served at room temperature. So it's great to do for company as you can make it ahead of time. There are tons of recipes on the net. I use a recipe by Penelope Casas. But here's one on epicurious.
my friend and I just made an appetizer for our friends bachlorette party and they were a hit.
i'm not sure if "crostini" is the appropriate word for these, but I think it is.
anyways, slice a baguette and layer slices on a baking sheet. (we used multigrain baguette)
now you have 3 options to choose from - all are delish, variety is probably good.
option 1 - caprese
spread pesto, then basil leaf, then fresh mozzarella slice, then tomato slice
option 2 - hummus
spread Trader Joe's white bean & basil hummus (or your favorite hummus), top with an arugala leaf, then sharp cheddar
option 3 - mustard & avocado
spread with whole grain mustard, then avocado slice, then havarti (or your fav cheese)
baked til all cheese are melted
I just came up another one :-) ....
spread with whole grain mustard, top with thinly sliced granny smith apple, then a piece of crispy bacon (you can omit this if you are vegetarian), top with white cheddar cheese
Also - get thee to a Trader Joe's or Costco and pick up some raspberry & brie filled philo dough appetizers - bake & serve - super easy and super yummy!
a popular one my SIL likes to make is a huge brick of pepper jack cheese (from costco) wrapped in biscuit dough and baked til cheese melty inside - top with apricot preserves - this is a little messy, but extremely filling and ALWAYS a big hit - serve with butter crackers
another good one is a layered mexican dip w/ tortilla chips - very filling (if its too much you could also just mix a can of refried beans & a jar of salsa and call it a dip)
layer refried beans into a trifle bowl, layer with sliced green onions, then spread with sour cream & cream cheese that has been blended together in a food processor, then gucamole and shredded cheese
pigs in a blanket - beef or turkey hot dogs wrapped in biscuit dough and baked
stuffed mushrooms (combination of parm cheese & breadcrumbs OR same with some crab meat too)
sweet potato & red onion baked quesadillas w/ cilantro sour cream (these are a BIG hit too!)
INGREDIENTS for quesadillas
shredded mozzarella & cheddar cheeses
whole wheat tortillas
sweet potatoes, baked and chopped into small chunks
red onion, chopped
DIRECTIONS for quesadillas
layer whole wheat tortillas onto a baking sheet
bake sweet potatoes until soft
sautee red onions and set aside
please some sweet potatoes & onions on 1 half of each tortilla - cover in cheese
fold tortillas over and bake til melted through - cut into 4ths, serve with cilantro sour cream (recipe follows)
INGREDIENTS for cilantro sour cream
container of sour cream
bunch of cilantro
1 garlic clove, salt & pepper
DIRECTIONS for cilantro sour cream
place all ingredients in a food processor and blend til mixed through - serve cold w/ the quesadillas
for dessert I would do a pretty fruit salad and maybe a trifle or something