Appetizers serve an important purpose when you entertain, taking the edge off your guests' appetite and giving them a taste of the rest of the menu. Less is more for an appetizer menu, especially when you entertain kids. Prepare savory appetizers and present the finger foods attractively on a serving table.
Give an assortment of cheese a centerstage position on the appetizer table. Serve a semi-soft cheese like brie or a hard cheese like white cheddar cut into bite-size wedges. Enhance the flavor of cheese by keeping it at room temperature for an hour or so. Guests can carve a small serving of brie and place it onto thin crackers or crusty bread.
Dips are easy to make and convenient because you can make them ahead of time. Make a simple and kid-friendly dip by combining a ranch dip mix with sour cream. Make a savory feta spread with feta and cream cheese. Add fresh herbs, such as basil, dill, parsley or tarragon. Mix sour cream, salsa, cheddar cheese, green onion and cilantro for a mildly spicy dip. Mix a spinach dip with sour cream, cream cheese, frozen spinach and ranch dressing. Serve fresh vegetables, chips or crackers for dipping.
Get out the party picks and fill them with a variety of raw vegetables. Pay attention to color contrasts and flavors, and choose from grape tomatoes, marinated mushrooms, pickled beets, green onions, jicama strips, snow peas, artichoke hearts and olives. Slide two or three vegetables onto each pick in various combinations. Place the vegetable picks onto a platter beside your homemade dips.
Don't forget a few warm appetizers to round out the table. Quiche squares are simple to make using prepared pie crust, eggs and a few vegetables, like onions and broccoli. After baking the quiche, cut it into small squares and serve them warm. Chicken wings and meatballs other easy-to-make finger foods.
- Chef-Menus: Easy Appetizer Recipes
- "Appetizers!: Good Housekeeping Favorite Recipes"; From the Editors of Good Housekeeping; 2006
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