If you enjoy garlic bread, and I mean really, really like garlic, then you will adore this recipe. Because the garlic is very prominent I don’t use regular sized slices of french bread, but rather demi baguettes, (slices are a bit larger than a long baguette loaf.) The flavor of the garlic is toned down by using the cream cheese and the slice of grape tomato. Unfortunately these breads don’t hold their crispness to the next day, but if tossed in a fry pan with olive oil for a minute or two, (don’t put in microwave) they bounce back and work well broken up and used as garlic croutons in a salad. They are the best!
My Mom made the best deviled eggs (that and her spaghetti sauce were my two favorites of her recipes). She frequently changed what she put on top (sometimes capers, or bay shrimp, thin slice of dill pickle, black olive slices, etc.) but the basic recipe stayed the same: eggs, mayo, bacon, and onion powder. I have adapted it a bit by adding green olives with pimento, because that is how I make my egg salad sandwiches and I like the brininess of the green olives with the smooth creamy taste of the chopped egg yolks – these flavors just work for me – hope you like it too.
Onion dip is readily available at any grocery store silently sitting beside the ranch dip, like an old married couple. But if you look closely to the ingredient list on the bottom of the tub, you might think twice on taking it home to serve family and friends. Why? Just check out some of the ingredients found on the label: trio calcium phosphate, guar gum, xanthan gum, vegetable gum (really needs 3 GUMS?), corn starch, distilled vinegar, sugar, caramel color, onion flavoring, dried onion flakes, dried parsley, malteddexrin, and a whole lot of other things that don’t look either nutritious nor appetizing. With homemade caramelized onion dip you know exactly what you are eating, and will enjoy pungent flavors of robust onion and garlic with a touch of lemon zest that provides a delightful freshness to this dip.
New Year’s Eve is almost here, oh yeah I already said that in the other Black and White Canape post. So here is the second B&W canapé that is quick, but elegant. Any time you use caviar the canape/appetizer becomes elegant, right? You start with a basic crostini, add some caviar, a little creme fraiche and you are on your way to an elegant canapé in a relatively short period of time. I know, you are thinking, she said the same thing in the other B&W post. I know, I know, but time is running out on 2012 so I don’t have a lot of time to be clever. Here we go….
New Year’s Eve is almost here, but if you need a couple of quick but elegant canapés, I have two I think you will like. First up is Olive Tapenade. You start with a basic crostini, add some black olive tapenade, a little creme fraiche and you are on your way to an elegant canapé in a relatively short period of time. Here we go….
This was one of my contributions for appetizers this Christmas Eve. They went quickly – so assuming they were well received. I love shrimp and if you add some onion and garlic to it, and then fry it, I love it even more! Will be looking to add more fruits and vegetables to my diet in 2013, but for the next few days till the end of 2012 I am concentrating on foods that I really, really like! So before I change my ways for 2013 I will make these again for New Years Eve – only more, lots more.
Watercress with cream cheese and pimento has become a standard for us at Christmas time and New Year’s Eve. We originally had this canape years ago from a catering company called If you are from the Bay Area, you might remember their Pink Bakery Boxes tied with pink curling ribbon that held the canapes – absolutely the best canapes from any caterer in the Bay Area, bar none. Unfortunately they closed their business in the mid-80’s. So sad…but I digress… I love this canape in large part to the contrast of flavors between the pungent red pimento against the peppery tones of the watercress. When you take that first, one perfect bite…. heaven. For New Year’s Eve I also make them with black caviar on top.
Beets and mandarin oranges are plentiful in my local grocery store, as both are in season. I recently had a delicious beet salad with mandarin oranges at the Trellis Restaurant in Kirkland. Then last week I had a great beet salad with mascarpone (no mandarins) at Tulio in Seattle. I liked both salads very much and decided to combine the flavors from both salads and came up with what you see here. This is about as easy a salad as you can get other than stopping at your local salad bar (which I am never in favor of). You do have to roast the beets, but it is quite easy,
Mushrooms, mushrooms, mushrooms. I add them to sauces, soups, chinese food, atop pizzas, sliced raw in salads, chicken casseroles, beef bourguignon, and on and on and on. They are minced, sliced, cubed, chopped, braised, stewed, fried, sautéed, used in place of beef (the Portobello is perfect for this) and they are even mashed if you are making Mushroom Pate. They are one of the most versatile vegetables, though technically they are really a fungus. And today I stuffed them with cream cheese, vermouth, bread crumbs and herbs in the traditional manner.
If you like bacon, you will love the combination of crisp bacon, brown sugar goodness, and crunchy water chestnuts. This is a simple and quick-to-prepare appetizer – a bit of marinating, a bit of baking, and voila you have a sure-fire delicious appetizer with very little effort. I usually marinate the water chestnuts about 2 hours, but if you are pressed for time you can narrow that down to 15 minutes and still have a winner. This appetizer has been around for decades and yet your guests will polish them off like you just invented a new hors d’oeuvre – no matter their age!