Category Archives: Appetizers

Tomato Harvest Bruschetta

Loving my veggie garden this year because with all of the rain – comes a huge harvest of tomatoes!  For Labor Day weekend, I made a few different recipes using tomatoes.  Bruschetta was at the top of my list!  So easy to make and you don’t need plum tomatoes.  I used the large juicy big boy-type tomatoes!

Tomato Harvest Bruschetta appetizer

Slice a baguette thin and place on a cookie sheet in one layer.  Place under a hot broiler for just a minute or two until they start to brown.  Flip to the other side and repeat.

When they come out of the oven, drizzle with olive oil and rub the top surface with a sliced garlic clove.

Toasted Baguette

Using 3 or 4 large tomatoes, slice a tomato side ways (so that the top half of the tomato has the vine) and squeeze the juice and seeds over the kitchen sink.  Repeat with the bottom half to remove seeds.

Dice the tomatoes, drizzle with olive oil, S&P to taste.

Fresh basil!  Pull 10-12 fresh basil leaves, roll them up together and slice thin.  Add to the tomato mixture and stir.

Scoop the tomato mixture on each toasted baguette slice.

SweetStackers food storage tray inserts

A fresh tomato appetizer perfect for late summer.  Ready to serve or transport to a party!

Sweet Stackers Food Storage trays appetizer

Sweet Stackers are reusable, stackable trays that insert into a container your already own.  The classic Tupperware 9×9 inch container and 8×8 inch Sweet Stackers tray set is pictured.   Two layers of bruschetta in one container without a soggy mess.  Ready to transport to a party or picnic!

sweetstackers.com

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Sweet Stackers Etsy Shop

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Green & Chick Pea Hummus

…and for the The Triscuit Summer Snackoff – Challenge 2!  Triscuit – check!  Peas – check! and at least one other ingredient – check!

This time I am even more determined that it would be great to meet Martha Stewart!

My inspiration for this recipe came to me as I was making a batch of homemade hummus.  I actually get cravings for hummus!  It wasn’t until I started working after college that I was enlightened about a little family owned mediterranean restaurant in my neighborhood.  I remember having hummus for the first time and I will admit that I was not impressed.  But I loved the rest of the food and after trying hummus a few more times, I became addicted.  It is a great healthy snack – and yes, I do crave it!  Always wondered if I am the only one?

I’ll be honest…this is totally my creation, I didn’t even check the web to see if there were recipes already like this!  So here is a basic hummus recipe with the addition of green peas!  The green peas sweetened and “freshened” the hummus.  Traditional hummus does not have the most eye-appealing color, so the bright green from the green peas really made for a beautiful presentation!

Green Chick Pea Hummus

Green & Chick Pea Hummus

1 large clove garlic

1 – 15 ounce can of chick peas

½ cup frozen green peas; thawed

¼ cup tahini (sesame paste)

¼ cup lemon juice

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

In a food processor, add garlic clove to mince.  Add remaining ingredients, one at a time while blending.  If the mixture is too thick, gradually add up to 1/4 cup of water until you reach a preferred consistency.

 

 

 

 

 

Triscuit Berry Cheesecakes – savory & sweet dessert bites!

Today I entered the Triscuit Summer Snackoff and a chance to meet Martha Stewart!  Why not…she is someone I would love to meet and I always have Triscuits in my pantry.

This recipe was inspired by my Star Spangled Tartlets – a bite-sized dessert that I made for the 4th of July.  Instead of using pie crust to make tartlets, the similar ingredients could be used as a spread or topping on the Triscuit.  These would make a great savory-sweet appetizer or dessert to make up in a pinch!  The sweet berry pie filling and cheesecake spread paired nicely with a savory Rosemary & Olive Oil Triscuit.  My husband even said it was like a party in his mouth with all of the different flavors.  It actually take a lot to impress him.

Ha!  So wish me luck!!

IMG_3843

Triscuit Berry Cheesecakes

• 2 cups fresh mixed berries (strawberry, blueberry)
• 1/3 cup water
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 2 TB corn starch
• 2 TB butter
• 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
• 2 tablespoons butter , softened
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
• Box of Rosemary & Olive Oil Triscuits
• sliced almonds to garnish
Place the first 5 ingredients in a heavy saucepan, bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thickened. Remove from heat and cool.

Using an electric mixer, on high, beat the cream cheese and butter until smooth and fluffy. Lower the speed and add vanilla, then gradually add the sugar.

To assemble: Place Rosemary & Olive Oil Triscuits neatly on a serving platter. Spread cream cheese mixture on each cracker and top with a dollop of berry filling. Place a few sliced almonds on top to garnish.

Appetizer, Anniversary and a Giveaway

This past week was my 2nd Anniversary for my PartyKitchen blog. Much is still the same in the past couple of years and some is exciting and new for me. I love to share my cooking and baking creations coming from my kitchen to yours. Plus, I still enjoy to entertain family and friends for all occasions from holidays to kid’s birthday parties. My girls are a couple of years older now and it is fun to get them more involved in the daily goings on in the kitchen. Hence there’s always a party in my kitchen.

The new and exciting part for me is to start a little business while staying home with my girls. Sweet Stackers was a solution to a problem that has frustrated me for years. Certain foods like appetizers, cookies and dessert bars can not be stacked without them sticking together, getting smudged or smushed.  It makes them hard to store in your pantry or fridge and difficult to transport to a party.  Sweet Stackers are reusable, stackable trays that allow you to maximize storage without food items touching each other in a container you already own.  For more information about Sweet Stackers, you can visit my website sweetstackers.com.  The website will explain details about the product, sizes available, where to buy them and ideas for the many different uses of these trays!

Need a perfect appetizer to serve for a game day or Superbowl party? Baked Potato Bites will be a huge hit! Make them ahead of time and transport them to a party. They are easy, can be served warm or cold and topped with your favorite baked potato toppings – like cheese, sour cream, bacon and chives.

Baked Potato Bites Appetizer

Baked Potato Bites

  • 8-10 petite gold potatoes, cut into ¼-½ inch slices
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 5 slices turkey bacon, cooked and roughly chopped
  • optional additional toppings (sour cream, chives, etc.)

Preheat oven to 425°.

Brush melted butter on foil covered cookie sheet.  Place sliced potatoes flat on cookie sheet and brush tops with additional melted butter.  Bake for 30 minutes.

Flip potatoes on cookie sheet and bake for 10 additional minutes.  Remove from oven and sprinkle the potatoes with cheese and bacon.  Bake for an additional 5 minutes.

SweetStackers game day appetizer

Serve warm or refrigerate.  Top with additional toppings like sour cream and chives.  The perfect type of appetizer to store using Sweet Stackers stackable tray set in one container without messing up the toppings.

Now I wanted to do something special to celebrate the 2nd Anniversary of PartyKitchen – a Sweet Stackers Giveaway!  One Sweet Stackers set includes 2 trays, 8 – .75 Inch Stackers and 4 – 1.25 Inch Stackers.  This allows you to have two or three layers of food in a typical 3 inch deep container.  The selected winner, must be located in the continental U.S., will have 3 days to respond and select which size Sweet Stackers tray set they would like to receive.  Good luck and a sincere thank you for following my PartyKitchen blog!!

Enter the Rafflecopter by clicking the following link:

Sweet Stackers Rafflecopter Giveaway

stackable trays insert into container Sweet Stackers Christmas Cookie Storage

Dessert Storage Magic Bars  Transport Mini Desserts to Thanksgiving

Sweet Stackers - classic deviled eggs  Cucumber Appetizer

Mango Salsa Wonton Appetizer

Mango Salsa Wonton Appetizer

This appetizer turned out so cute, it was easy and fun to make using a package of Wonton Wrappers.  It was actually harder to find the Wonton Wrappers at the grocery store!  (they are found in the produce section)  Making little cups out of Wonton really opens the possibilities because they could be filled with virtually anything.  The key is not filling them with something liquidy, otherwise the bottom will get soggy.

I transported 50 of these appetizers to a party using Sweet Stackers.  I was able to fit two layers of these appetizer cups on the large rounded Sweet Stackers trays in one large cake container.  Visit sweetstackers.com to learn more about how to save space and make it easier to transport food items in one container!

Mango Salsa Wonton Appetizer

yield: 50 appetizer cups

1 package Wonton Wrappers

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 can diced tomatoes with green chilis, drained

1 cup of frozen corn, thawed (or 1 can of corn, drained)

1/4 cup of chopped green onions

1 mango, diced

1/4 teaspoon of cumin

salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350°.  Gently press one wonton wrapper into each cup of a mini muffin tin.  Ensure that the edges are folded out.  Bake for approximately 7 minutes until golden.  Remove from tin to cool.

Drain the black beans, tomatoes, corn well.  Mix with green onions and mango.  Fill each cup and they are ready to go!

Sweet Stackers – Classic Deviled Eggs

Deviled Eggs are a classic appetizer summer picnics or barbeques.  Did you ever have a difficult time trying to store or transport an appetizer like this?  There are special containers and glass platters made specifically for deviled eggs…but seriously, where do you have room to store a container or large platter that you may only use once in a while and ONLY for deviled eggs?

Sweet Stackers stackable trays can create two layers of deviled eggs in one 3″ deep air-tight container.  This is perfect for transporting an appetizer like this to party or picnic.  Plus Sweet Stackers trays can be used for so much more!

Sweet Stackers - classic deviled eggs

In order to prevent the eggs from sliding around, I placed curly parsley in the bottom of the container and on one of the trays,  The eggs perfectly nested in between the parsley which made them easy to fill.  The parsley was not only there to hold them, but also made a pretty presentation.

Sweet Stackers trays & curley parsley

Classic Deviled Eggs

8 eggs; hard-boiled and peeled

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon yellow mustard

1 teaspoon vinegar

salt & pepper to taste

paprika for garnish

Hard boil the eggs, cool and peel.  Slice eggs lengthwise in half, reserve the yellow yolk in a bowl.  Mash the yolk with a fork, then mix with mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, S&P until creamy.

Scoop a spoonful or pipe the mixture into each egg white until full.  Sprinkle with paprika for garnish.

Sweet Stackers - deviled eggs storage

One container with two layers of devilled eggs…pretty and easy to store or transport to your next party!

Visit sweetstackers.com for more information about our product and where you can buy it or visit our gallery to get more ideas.

Vienna Mushroom Swiss Cheese Bread

This is one of my “go to” recipes when I need to bring an appetizer to a party, especially in the winter.  I have been making this for a Superbowl party for the past few years and everyone seems to get pretty excited about it.  This bread is seriously gone in minutes….so it must be good!!

Vienna Swiss Cheese Bread

Vienna Swiss Cheese Bread

1 Loaf Vienna Bread

1 lb. brick swiss cheese – cut in 1/4″ slices

3/4 C melted butter (or use half margarine)

1 tsp. seasoning salt

1 TB minced onion

1 TB dry mustard

1 TB lemon juice

4 oz sliced canned mushrooms (I used fresh too, and I liked it better)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Vienna Bread - diagonal cuts

Cut bread on a diagonal, 1/2″ apart, making sure not to cut through bottom on loaf.  Cut bread the same way in the other diagonal direction.  Place bread on heavy duty foil.

Insert pieces on cheese into every little slot of the bread.  Mix melted butter and the rest of the seasonings.  Pour over the top of bread.  Sprinkle with mushrooms.  Wrap up to create a tent and bake at 350 degrees for 60 minutes.

Kitchen Tip:  Bake for 1/2 hour and transport to the party house, then bake for an extra 1/2 hour so it comes out of the oven hot.

Salmon Cakes

Adding fish in our diets has proven to be very healthy and I have made it a point of making a fish dinner at least once a week.  Usually my choice fish is salmon and my kids love it.  My three-year old, likes the fact that it is pink…but I think my kids like the texture.  I found an inspiring recipe for Salmon Cakes that reminds me of the crab cakes that I had when I was in Baltimore.  I just knew that the kids would love it….and they do!  Salmon Cakes make a perfect main course, but also would make a tasty appetizer.

Yields about 10 salmon cakes

3/4 lbs salmon filet

1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil

S&P to taste

3/4 C dried bread crumbs

2/3 C shredded cheddar cheese

2/3 C frozen corn kernels

1/4 C mayonnaise

1 egg, slightly beaten

1-2 TB canola oil

To cook salmon:  I prefer to buy my filet of salmon and either broil or grill it skin side down, by rubbing the surface with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle a little salt and pepper over the top.  It usually cooks in about 10 minutes, once the fish “flakes” and pulls easily apart.  While it is still warm, I flake all of the meat away from the skin ensuring that there are no bones.

While the salmon is cooking, measure the bread crumbs, cheddar cheese, corn, mayo and egg in a large mixing bowl.  Add the flaked salmon and mix all ingredients together until they start to bind.  Make the patties by flattening them in the palm of your hand, they should be about 2 inches in diameter.

Heat half of the canola oil in a large fry pan.  Place the salmon cakes in the pan and cook for about 5 minutes, until the bottom is golden brown.  Flip the salmon cake and add the remaining oil to the pan, cook another 3-4 minutes until golden brown.

Tuna Melt – Tuna Boat Style

Can’t take the credit for this one, but I really wanted to pass this along because I thought it was a different idea for lunch.  I am bored with sandwiches, trying to get more veggies in our diet and looking for alternatives for breakfast, lunch and snacks.  Snack Girl has done it again!  She has a ton of great ideas to eat healthier and I am listening!

This Tuna Boat makes a great finger food which is a perfect for lunch at home, on a picnic (if kept cold), or zapped in a microwave at work.  Don’t you think it would make a delicious appetizer when guests come over?  I think any visitor would be impressed even if you knew it took no time to make!

Tuna Boat

Looks beautiful & satisfying!  I really like the combination of tuna salad and crunchy bell pepper with cheddar sprinkled on top.  Place it under the broiler for 3 minutes until melted…yum!

Mmm…and did you know that red Bell peppers have higher concentrations of many nutrients than other Bell peppers?

Tomato Harvest Salsa

Is it weird that I absolutely love the smell of tomato vines on my hands?

This is my favorite part of summer…when it is time to harvest tomatoes from my veggie garden.  Much of it takes me back to my childhood, when I would go into the garden to pick the biggest tomato I could find, brush off the dirt in my shirt and take a big bite out of it.

This is the salsa that I whipped up from this afternoon’s tomato harvest!

4-5 medium size tomatoes chopped

1 green bell pepper chopped

2-3 banana peppers chopped

1 small onion diced small

2 cloves garlic minced

4-5 basil leaves chopped

1 tsp lemon juice

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp cider vinegar

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp ground cumin

hot sauce to taste

Happy Summer!