I came up with seven appetizers that were healthy, delicious and down right perfect for events. I would suggest making these for large or small groups of friends and family over for holidays, or an impromptu party.
These little delights are for the sweet hearted and 100% vegetarian, but everybody will want one. Makes 24.
- 2 sweet potatoes(or yams)
- 1 tsp H2O
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tbsp cornmeal
- 1 tsp fresh ginger(minced)
- ½ tbsp minced garlic
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1/8tsp salt
- 3tbsp shredded coconut
- Peel the sweet potatoes and cut into chunks. Place on an plate with the water. Cover with microwave-safe plastic wrap and heat it up for 6 minutes. Let stand for 3 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Mash the sweet potatoes with a fork. In a food processor or blender, pulse the potatoes with the remaining ingredients, but not the coconut. Make it a course puree.
- Drop 24 dollops of batter on a baking sheet lined with foil. Sprinkle with coconut.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
Parmesan and Herb Chixy Tenders
For chicken finger kid in all of us, these Chicken Tenders are sure to please because they are jam-packed with aromatic flavors and there is no frying involved making these healthier than you typical chicken fingers.
- 1lb boneless, skinless free range chicken breast
- Flour,when needed
- Cooking spray
- 1/3 cup plain bread crumbs
- ½ cup freshly grate Parmesan cheese
- ½ tsp minced garlic(from a jar)
- ½ tsp fresh rosemary, minced
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp pepper
- 1 large egg white
- 1 tbsp water
- Olive oil
1. Preheat the oven 425° and coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
2. Cut the chicken breast into 24 pieces and place on a work surface. Coat lightly with some flour.
3. On a plate mix crumbs, cheese, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper. Dip the chicken into a bowl with the egg white beat with the water.. Then coat with the crumb mixture.
4. Spray with lightly with olive oil. Bake for 7 minutes. Flip over, bake for 8 more minutes.
Asparagus Wrapped in Bacon
This is the easiest recipe that my mom passed down to me. It uses the meatiness of the asparagus and the salty taste of the bacon to create an explosion of flavor.
- 1 lb apple wood bacon
- 1 lb asparagus
- Pepper to taste
1.Preheat the oven to 350°.
2.Cut the stalky ends off of the asparagus.
3. Wrap the bacon around the asparagus but not covering the tips.
4. Bake for 12-15 minutes.
Stuffed Baby Portabella 'Shrooms
I love Italian cuisine, so I came up with this finger food that utilizes that sweetness of the mushrooms and the bite of pesto.
- 24 baby portabella mushrooms
- ½ cup ricotta cheese
- 2 tbsp pesto(I like to use the Classico brand)
- 2 tsp flour
- 2 tbsp Romano cheese
- 1 tbsp dry bread crumbs
1. Preheat the oven to 400° and coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and lay on the sheet- hollow side up.
2. In a bowl, mix ricotta, pesto and the flour until smooth. Spoon the mixture into the mushrooms. Combine Romano cheese and the bread crumbs in a little bowl. Sprinkle on top of the mixture.
3. Bake for 16 minutes.
Drunken Beans and Chips
Using plastic shot glasses, serve this bean mixture with a tortilla chip. The tequila adds flavor and I promise it won't make your guests tipsy unless they discover the bottle itself.
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 can kidney beans
- Salt, to taste
- ¼ cup tequila(choose a tequila that you enjoy to sip)
- 2 tbsp hot water
- 1 avocado, cubed
- Sour cream is optional
1. In a skillet, heat the oil, garlic, cumin, and oregano over low heat until sizzling. Stir in the beans. Add salt to taste. Increase to med-low heat. Add the tequila-simmer 5 minutes. Mash the beans until creamy. If the mixture is thick use the hot water.
2. Spoon into the plastic cups, top with avocado and sour cream. Place a tortilla chip with it. Serve hot
Black Bean and Beer Soup Shooters
I serve this soup in shot glasses topped with low-fat sour cream. You don't even need a soup, just sip and enjoy.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 white onion, chopped very fine
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 3 cups canned black beans
- 1 can beer
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Lime juice
- Sour cream
1. In a frying pan, heat up the oil, nice and hot. Cook the onion until soft(4-5 minutes). Add the garlic, cumin, and cayenne pepper.
2. Add the black beans, beer, salt, and the pepper.
3. Bring to a boil, reduced heat, and cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring.
4. In a blender, puree of of the soup mixture, return to the pan and cook for five more minutes.
5. Pour into shot glasses, stir in a bit of lime juice, top with sour cream.
Dates with Bacon
Bacon is a real winner at parties which is why I created a second dish with and also trying to keep the appetizers closely related. Dates are rich and nutty and combining them with bacon completes the flavors.
24 date, pitted
18 almonds, chopped
¼ lb bleu cheese
¼ lb bacon
Wooden skewers, cut in half
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Cut each of the bacon strips in half.
2. Replace the pit of the date with the almond and bleu cheese.
3. Wrap the date with bacon. Place each date on a skewer, bake for 7 minutes or until golden brown.