When entertaining, whether a small or large party, it’s always a good idea to have a plate of finger-food style appetizers, to keep the guests busy while serving drinks, and preparing to serve the food.
Many of such appetizers recipes (also called canapés, amuse bouche, or Hors d’oeuvre, if you care to sound more fancy), are quite time consuming to prepare, as they come from processional kitchens, where a special cook is assigned to prepare them. As we don’t have such luxury in home kitchens, here is a recipe for a very quick and easy one.
Instead of working on preparing different toppings, here I’ve done the opposite, by using one spread with different bases, each creating their own different flavors and textures.
The cheese spread I’ve prepared this time combines blue cheese with fresh goat cheese, and seasoned with a small amount of mustard, olive oil, and a hint of honey, for a slight sweetness. This savory-tangy spread is then paired with dried fruits, nuts, celery, peppers or store-bought crackers.
These small, tasty nibbles, are easy to serve, and even easier to eat. Try them and enjoy.
* The prepared appetizers can be kept in the fridge for up to a day. They can also be frozen (except for the peppers and celery – these should be made fresh), for up to two weeks. Freeze first separated on a tray, then pack in airtight containers, separating the layers with wax paper. To thaw, simply place on the serving plate for 5-10 minutes prior to serving.
Makes: about 60
Prep time: 20 minutes
Chilling time: 10 minutes
For the cheese spread:
4 oz (115 grams) creamy blue cheese
4 oz (115 grams) fresh goat cheese
2 Tbs sour cream
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp honey
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp freshly ground four peppers mix
2 tsp olive oil
For the base:
Dates, cut in half, pits removed
Dried apricots, separated, inner side on top
Celery heart stalks
Mini peppers, cut in half, deseeded
Dried cranberries, slivered almonds, pecan pieces, chopped celery leaves
1. Place the cheeses, sour cream, mustard, honey, salt, pepper and olive oil in a small food processor bowl, fitted with the metal blade. Process to a smooth spread, cleaning the sides of the bowl once, to a smooth consistency.
2. Place a piping bag, fitted with a medium star tip, in a tall container. Fill with the spread and place in the fridge for 10 minutes.
3. Place the bases on a cookie sheet pan, lined with wax paper. Pipe a small amount of the spread on each base, and add the garnishes.
4. Keep in the fridge, or in the freezer, until ready to serve. (See notes)