When I think of Weekend Football, hearty appetizers come to mind. To me a good-sized piece of crostini is like eating a mini sandwich. Except you get to see what you are eating and I fill up quickly on just 3 or 4 of these – okay maybe 5 or 6, cuz I like them. I have a reputation for not being able to keep anything green alive (although green happens to be my favorite color). I purchased one of those bags of fresh “living” basil that has roots and dirt attached and sits in a plastic bag. This I knew would not be difficult to keep alive so quickly brought it home and placed it in a tall glass on my kitchen window ledge. Needless to say I was pretty self-satisfied that I had a “live” plant that I could count on being around for a couple of months or so. I didn’t realize I was supposed to take it out of the plastic and water it weekly. I went to get some fresh …
Roasted onions and parmesan cheese are a great flavor combo. For this canape I use Parmesan/Reggiano grated cheese. If you need a quick canape at the last-minute this one fills the bill – only five ingredients to make the base and then any toppers you want to add. In this case I chose bacon and salmon roe, but you could also do slices of cocktail onion, green or black olive slices, slivers of green apple for a tart twist, or any number of toppers, depending upon your imagination and what you have in your pantry.
A few ingredients can go a long way, when they are packed with flavor. Keep these items on hand and you will have a spot-on tasty treat to give your drop-in guests, or when you have limited time in prepping for your holiday party fare. This canape has a sweet savory flavor highlighting the sweetness of the cranberry with the sharpness of the gherkin. A pleasant surprise when you take that first bite. Quick, easy, flavorful – how simple is this?
One holiday down, and two to go before 2014 comes to an end – the year has certainly gone by very quickly! Lots of holiday parties in the next month, so canapes and appetizers will be at the top of my list of things to prepare. These stuffed mushrooms are quite easy to make and have a slight piquant tangy flavor to them as evidenced from the combo of goat cheese and balsamic vinegar reduction. I served them on Thanksgiving and got two thumbs up from my 5-year-old great-niece Lily – that makes this appetizer a winner as far as I am concerned!
Here is a perfect canape to serve on Thanksgiving while you wait for the turkey to finish cooking. You don’t really want heavy canapes/appetizers as you want everyone to enjoy your turkey with all the trimmings that you have slaved over all day. Make the sugared cranberries right after you put the turkey in the oven, as the cranberries will need to set/dry for about 3 hours. Assemble the canapes about an hour before you serve dinner. Open the oven door and smell your delicious turkey; place the canapes on a white platter and serve to guests. Sit, eat, sip glass of wine/champagne and you are done. Let someone else serve the dinner and do the dishes – after all you have done enough today!
Here’s a quick and flavorful canape perfect for a cocktail party, or something savory for when it’s Girls Night Out at your house. Try this little gem. Serve it alongside a platter of Kalamata olives with cheese and crackers – it completes the flavor cycle. ♥♥♥ HERE’S WHY I LIKE IT: crunch from both the baguette and water chestnut; creaminess of the cheese; rich, and tangy guacamole, and of course the satiny texture of the thinly cut prosciutto. Three different flavors, and three different textures, all in one bite-sized appetizer!
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….
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.
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.