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Oct 16, 2009 03:02 PM

Best cold app

This is super specific, but if the chowhounds can't help, I don't know who can...
I live in south FL and it is just now getting to outdoor dining weather (this weekend is supposed to be the first time it has NOT gotten to 90 since early May).

I want to add several cold appetizers to my home cooking menu, so I can whip them up and take them out to parks for sunset picnics with my hubby.

We are on a budget so caviar is less likely than hummus, but I would love to hear what you all suggest.

Thanks for the help!

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  1. not really cold, but served room temperature i like cheese and crackers, roasted/salted nuts, and olives.

    cold apps could be shrimp cocktail, gazpacho, cucumber slices with a number of toppings (cream cheese seasoned with herbs de provence, smoked salmon, etc.). or how about an antipasto platter?

    i'm in sf where there is no such thing as outdoor dining weather, at least not at night!

    2 Replies
    1. re: lschow

      lol, i am in boston and it snowed this morning!

      1. re: lschow

        You know if we wear our parkas and wrap in a blanket we can dine on the deck.

      2. ceviche
        figs stuffed with goat cheese
        marinated artichoke hearts
        zucchini sliced into ribbons (looks like pasta) dressed with olive oil, lemon juice and toasted slivered almonds
        vietnamese spring rolls
        soba noodle salad
        cantaloupe with smoked salmon
        smoked fish pate
        cucumber salad with sesame oil, ginger, and sesame seeds
        seaweed salad
        caprese salad (how are your tomatoes down there?)
        herb salads with instant cous cous and nuts
        morrocan carrot salad
        watermelon/black olive/feta salad
        chilled berry soups, made with yogurt and mint
        radishes rolled in butter and kosher salt
        endive and bleu cheese salad with candied walnuts
        orange/red onion/black olive salad
        tiny sandwiches of cream cheese and chopped radish or watercress and butter

        hummus is my least favoite bean dip -- i am no fan of tahini. but other dips, from garbanzos, black beans or white beans, can be pureed with fresh herbs, lots of lemon, olive oil, and generous amounts of salt and pepper. these also make great salads, rather than dips

        1. I love this Pea Dip with Parmesan. I serve it with pita chips. I use the recipe as a guide. I add more garlic and pine nuts, less mint since I find it too overwhelming.

          1. Chilled Parmesan Polenta Circles topped with ricotta, sundried tomato and a shard of basil

            Belgian Endive leaves stuffed with Gorgonzola, Dried Cherries, Celery and Walnuts

            Melon wrapped with Prosciutto - simple but always a hit

            Garlic Broccoli Limon

            Potato Hummus

            Hearts of Palm and Artichoke Salad with Button Mushrooms and Marinated Bell Peppers - dress with a vinegarette
            1 garlic clove, minced
            1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
            1/4 cup white wine vinegar
            1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
            salt and pepper, to taste
            2 (14 ounce) jars hearts of palm, drained and sliced into 1/2-inch rings
            (14 ounce) cans artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
            2 boxes button mushrooms
            1 jar marinated red bell peppers, cut up
            1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
            Mix all but the veggies together, then pour over veggies and allow to marinate overnight or at least a few hours... mushrooms need time to absorb. you can double the vinegar dressing as well.

            ...And if you find yourself asking WWED (What Would Elvis Do)? Now you know...

            1. Thanks guys (and gals) -
              lschow is right... the bugs can be an issue for outdoor dining, but a good ocean breeze blows those pups away long enough for sunset!
              Your ideas sound yummy - I will be sure and enjoy the good weather for those who are moving inside for the winter.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Mega

                skewer grape tomato, basil leaf, then baby boconcini. reduce balsamic vinegar til thickened ans serve as dipping sauce on the side.
                easy and refreshing and healthy