View Full Version : Easy Appetizers?

10-14-2006, 12:22 PM
Hello! I am hosting the neighborhood ladies nite this week- thought I would come to the experts for some easy appetizer ideas. With the holidays just around the corner, this could make for an interesting and helpful thread.

Thanks in advance!

10-14-2006, 01:18 PM
Do you want hot or cold? I love appetizers, so I have lots of recipes. Some of my favorites:


Roasted Eggplant Spread w/ Pita Chips, Crackers, or Veggies

Brie w/ Toasted Almonds (optional) & Apricot Jam, wrapped in Phyllo or Puff Pastry

Garlic Grilled Shrimp

Artichoke Dip

Cheese Straws

Homemade Onion Dip w/ Veggies or Crackers

Sausage Sage Bites w/ Balsalmic Dipping Sauce

Hummus or Baba Ghanoush w/ Pita Chips or Veggies

Antipasto Platter w/ cheeses, Italian meats, marinated mushrooms, etc. (easy to compile at grocery store) :)

Baked Chicken Wings brushed with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and seasoned with Montreal Chicken Seasoning or whatever spices you've got in the cabinet

Quesadillas, vegetarian or chicken

Homemade salsa with chips

ETA: White pizza, made on a rectangular cookie sheet and cut into thin squares, usually with cheese and garlic, and broccoli or spinach

Harry & David Smoky Pepper and Onion Relish, combined with cream cheese per recipe on jar lid w/ crackers or veggies

If you want any recipes, let me know and I'll post them. I'm looking forward to seeing what else people suggest!

10-14-2006, 03:51 PM
Something seasonal that I made was a pumpkin dip served with cinnamon grahm craxkers. It was basically canned pumpkin, creamed cheese and some seasonings like cinnamon. I got the recipe in Cooking Light last year. I know it's on the sweet side so it is probably a better dessert but it definetly got nibbled up before Thanksgiving dinner here last year.

Alton Brown made these awesome parmasean "crackers" last year with pepper, cayenne pepper and fresh parm. cheese.

I can scrounge up official recipes if anyone wants them.


10-15-2006, 12:25 PM
Jen, you are a woman after my own heart! I love appetizers too, if I could I would serve dinner cocktail-party style every night!

I would love to see your bruchetta and roasted eggplant spread recipes! I am actually making several items on your list already- feta artichoke dip, and pan fried onion dip (that one's from Barefoot contessa but if you think you're recipe is better, please post that as well!!

I see you are due this month- are you overdue, or in the final days??


10-15-2006, 01:24 PM
Would you mind posting your homemade Salsa recipe? Thanks

10-15-2006, 06:52 PM

I would LOVE the "official" recipes for your pumpkin dip
with cinnamon graham crackers and your parmesan crackers
by Alton Brown.

They both sound great!!! :)

Thank you!

10-15-2006, 09:25 PM
We must have the same taste...my pan fried onion dip is from Barefoot Contessa, too; in fact, that's where the Roasted Eggplant Spread is from...page 41 if you have the cookbook, but I'll post it anyway. Happy party!

Oh, and thanks for asking...if nothing happens tomorrow, I'll be joining the ranks of the overdue! :)

Roasted Eggplant Spread (serves 6-8)
1 medium eggplant, peeled
2 red bell peppers, seeded
1 red onion, peeled
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 T. olive oil
1 1/2 t. kosher salt
1/2 t. black pepper
1 T. tomato paste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut the eggplant, bell pepper, and onion into 1 inch cubes. Toss them in a large bowl with the garlic, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread on a baking sheet. Roast for 45 minutes, until the vegetables are lightly browned and soft, turning once during cooking. Cool slightly.

Place the vegetables in a food processor fitted with a steel blade, add the tomato paste, and pulse 3 or 4 times to blend. (It should still be chunky). Taste for salt and pepper.

Bruschetta (from The New Basics Cookbook)(serves 8)
12 to 14 ripe plum tomatoes (about 1 3/4 lbs.)
2 T. minced garlic
2 T. minced shallots
1 c. fresh basil leaves
1 t. fresh lemon juice
salt and pepper, to taste
1/3 c. plus 1/4 c. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, slivered
8 thick slices Italian or other crusty bread

1. Cut the tomoates into 1/4 inch dice and place in a bowl; toss with the minced garlic and shallots.
2. Chop the basil coarsely and add to the tomatoes, along with the lemon juice, salt, and pepper, and 1/3 c. olive oil. Set aside
3. Heat the 1/4 c. olive oil in a small skillet. Saute the slivered garlic until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Discard the garlic and reserve the oil.
4. Toast the bread and cut each slice in half. Brush the garlic-flavored oil over each slice, spoon the tomato mixture over the bread, and serve immediately. (NOTE: I have made this several hours ahead with no problems.) Tomato mixture should be served at room temperature.

10-15-2006, 09:29 PM
I guess it's really more of a Pico de Gallo, not quite as thick as a jarred salsa would be, but we like it! I think there was also a thread a few months ago on salsa recipes.

Pico de Gallo (from Martha Stewart Living cookbook) (Makes 3 cups)
2 medium tomatoes, cut into 1/2 inch dice
2 jalapeno peppers, seeds and ribs removed, minced
1 small red onion, cut into 1/4 inch dice
2 scallions, white and green parts, finely chopped
1/4 c. fresh lime juice
1/2 c. loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 t. ground chili powder
1/2 t. kosher salt
1/8 t. black pepper

Combine ingredients in a mixing bowl; toss to combine. Serve. Will keep, refrigerated, in an airtight container, for up to 2 days. (NOTE: I think it's best made a few hours ahead, so that flavors can blend).

10-15-2006, 09:30 PM
Me too, if you don't mind posting! Thanks!

10-16-2006, 06:16 AM
>Roasted Eggplant Spread w/ Pita Chips, Crackers, or Veggies
>Brie w/ Toasted Almonds (optional) & Apricot Jam, wrapped in
>Phyllo or Puff Pastry
>Garlic Grilled Shrimp
>Artichoke Dip
>Cheese Straws
>Homemade Onion Dip w/ Veggies or Crackers
>Sausage Sage Bites w/ Balsalmic Dipping Sauce
>Hummus or Baba Ghanoush w/ Pita Chips or Veggies
>Antipasto Platter w/ cheeses, Italian meats, marinated
>mushrooms, etc. (easy to compile at grocery store) :)
>Baked Chicken Wings brushed with olive oil, salt, and pepper,
>and seasoned with Montreal Chicken Seasoning or whatever
>spices you've got in the cabinet
>Quesadillas, vegetarian or chicken
>Homemade salsa with chips
>ETA: White pizza, made on a rectangular cookie sheet and cut
>into thin squares, usually with cheese and garlic, and
>broccoli or spinach
>Harry & David Smoky Pepper and Onion Relish, combined with
>cream cheese per recipe on jar lid w/ crackers or veggies

Umm, could you have a party, make ALL of that, and then invite me? :D

10-16-2006, 09:56 AM
There have been some good threads about appetizers. Below are the links to the threads, since they're so good. My fav appetizers include olive puff wraps, spicy parmesan straws, sweet n spicy meatballs, matchstick crudites w/ TZ Marzetti's ranch veggie dip, proscuitto wrapped cantelope melon cubes, and toast rounds topped with ripe tomato slices, sea salt, a fresh basil leaf, and slice of mozzarella drizzled w/ garlic EVOO.

For olive puffs, roll one sheet of puff pastry to 12 inch square. W/ pizza cutter, make 1-inch by 6 inch strips. Place 1/2 tsp dollop of veggie cream cheese and pitted black or green (fancy or canned) olive 1/4 inch from end of one strip. Roll/wrap rest of pastry around olive and cheese. Bake in 375 degree oven until lightly brown (8-12 min). Or, with 1x6 strips, brush with melted butter, sprinkle w/ parmesan cheese, garlic powder, smide of cayenne pepper, then twist and bake 6-10 min.

I also love turkey meatballs warmed in a crock pot w/ Heinz chili sauce (jar) and 1/3 cup grape jelly. It's very good.








10-16-2006, 10:00 AM
Oh, and Sandra Lee just made 3 cute, quick appetizers that look wonderful:





10-16-2006, 12:49 PM
Thank you all! I know have some fantastic ideas, and I just have to make some selections- and save this thread for the holidays too!

I wish I could invite you all over!

Jen, best of luck!!! I hope your day is today, or not far off! Please let us know the good news when baby arrives!


10-16-2006, 01:34 PM
I'll have to get back on the pumpkin dip but here are the "crackers":


3 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano
Freshly ground black pepper, smoked paprika, or cayenne, optional

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
Grate cheese on the small hole side of a 4-sided box grater into a small bowl. Using a tablespoon measure, place cheese in mounds onto a nonstick silicone pad or greased parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. Flatten out mounds with the back of a spoon, making sure mounds are at least 4 inches apart. Season with pepper, paprika, or cayenne, if desired. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 5 to 6 minutes or until golden.


It doesn't get much easier than that! I've made them a few times and they all turned out well.


10-16-2006, 01:46 PM
Pumpkin Dip (found the recipe online :))

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Pumpkin Dip
From Cooking Light

3/4 cup (6 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
2 teaspoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
24 apple slices

Place first 3 ingredients in a medium bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Add syrup and cinnamon, and beat until smooth. Cover and chill 30 minutes. Serve with apple.

Yield: 12 servings (serving size: 2 tablespoons dip and 2 apple slices)

I didn't try it with apples but I bet it would be good. The grahm crackers were very yummy though!