Favorite Hors D'Oeuvre to pair with a cheese plate?
We are celebrating my daughter's first birthday this weekend with a party in the mid- afternoon (i.e post-nap). For the adults I am planning a cheese plate with traditional accompaniments (the kids get their own cheese plate, string cheese, with goldfish, cherios and other trimmings). In addition to the cheese, I will offer a mushroom pate and some charcuterie. I would also like to offer a hot (or at least warm) hors d'oeuvre. As I already have mushrooms and cheese accounted for, I was thinking something that didn't feature either. Also my house will be overrun with toddlers, my wife has forbidden me from serving anything that requires toothpicks to eat. Any one have a good suggestion?
I've been making this for years and really like it. Iit DOES have cheese but not "featured." I can assemble it early, even the day before, which makes me like it even more.
WARM CRAB AND ARTICHOKE DIP
¼ C cream cheese, room temp
½ C mayonnaise
¾ c (about 4 ounces) crabmeat, well drained (I use canned)
¼ C plus 2 T grated Parmesan cheese
3 T chopped drained marinated artichokes hearts
2 T sliced green onion
2 T diced red bell pepper
2 T diced celery
1 T finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
1-½ t Sherry wine vinegar
½ t hot pepper sauce
Toasted baguette slices or crackers
Preheat oven to 400. Beat cream cheese in large bowl with electric mixer until smooth. Add mayo; beat until just blended. Season with salt and pepper. Using rubber spatula, fold in crabmeat, ¼ cup Parmesan, artichoke hearts, green onion, bell pepper, celery, parsley, vinegar and hot pepper sauce.
Transfer crab mixture to 2-cup souffle dish (or equivalent). Top with remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese. Bake until crab mixture is warm and cheese melts, about 15 minutes. Transfer to platter. Surround with toasts; serve immediately.
I definitely use canned but can't remeber the brand and don't have any on hand at the moment. I know I don't use the cheapest brand and I seem to remember that the can says that it contains claw meat. I don't think you can go wrong. I don't remember where I got the recipe but I've been fixing it for quite a a number of years. I use a small gratin dish to cook it. I don't usually have sherry wine vinegar so I use Champagne. I definitely think there's flexibility there. Yum, makes me hungry thinking about it :)
Broiled mushroom caps, stuffed with buttered bread crumbs and anything else you might like, and dusted with finely grated Parmesan cheese.