12/27/2018 2:37:00 PM After Christmas lighter side
I guess I won’t be writing this column until next year…that means I’m still hanging in there, so far! Todays recipes are those after your Christmas celebration and I hope it was all you hoped it would be. And so, in about a week, there will be much celebrating of a different kind. What will be the food of the evening? Lots of appetizers, or as the French call them, Hors d’ Oeuvres. Most hostesses are looking for recipes that are easy to make and be made ahead of time. Try a recipe that is new to you and if you are a “seasoned” homemaker you can pretty much tell what it’s going to taste like.
I’m going to go right to recipes as I have several that you might like to try.
CREAM CHEESE ‘N AVOCADO SPREAD 3 oz. cream cheese, softened 1 soft avocado (not over-ripe), peeled, stone removed, and mashed until smooth 1 t. salad dressing 1 t. lemon juice 1/4 t. Worcesterchire sauce 2 drops hot sauce (Tabasco sauce) 1/4 t. salt 1/2 t. onion juice or 1 t. minced, very small, fresh onion
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl, mixing well. Transfer to a small bowl. Chill about 2-3 hours; serve at room temperature. Serve with chips, crisp crackers or a variety of veggies. Makes about 1-1/2 c. spread. Suggestion: Set the bowl in the center of a large serving plate and place crackers, veggies, etc. around the spread.
BACON WRAPPED TATER TOTS 16 strips bacon, cut in half, crosswise 1/2 c. maple syrup (could use pancake syrup but not as flavorful) 1 t. crushed red pepper flakes 32 frozen Tater Tots
Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until partially cooked but not crisp. Remove to paper towel. In a small container, like a cereal bowl, combine syrup and pepper flakes. Dip each bacon piece in syrup mixture, then around each Tater Tot. Secure with a toothpick. Place on a greased rack in a 15 x 10 baking pan (jelly roll pan) side by side. Bake at 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until bacon is crisp. To keep them warm you could put them in a slow cooker on LOW heat or put in a chafing dish over low heat. Makes about 32 appetizers. Note: You can cook bacon and drain a little ahead of time but don’t refrigerate as the bacon will get too firm to wrap. Also, instead of making the syrup mixture you can use a BBQ sauce to dip into. These are a little putzy but they’re really, good. And, the recipe is easily cut in half.
This recipe is so easy to make early in the day or the day before. Not much preparation everyone will like them.
HAM SALAD PHYLLO DAINTIES 2 pkgs. phyllo shells (15 in a pkg. found in the cookie aisle) Ham salad filling Ham salad filling: 1-1/ c. coarsely ground ham 1/3 c. mayonnaise or salad dressing 1/4 c. minced celery 2 t. minced onion 1-1/2 T. sweet pickle relish, drained very well 1/8 t. dry mustard Dash pepper
Combine all ingredients mixing well. Refrigerate until ready to fill shells using about one teaspoon of filling. Note: I put the relish in a small sieve and use the back of a teaspoon to press the liquid from the relish. You can fill them about an hour ahead of time and refrigerate. The shells won’t get soggy.
CHICKEN SALAD PHYLLO DAINTIES 1 pkg. phyllo shells (15 in a pkg.) Chicken salad filling 2 c. cooked chicken or turkey, diced very small 1/3 c. finely diced celery 1/3 c. finely chopped almonds 1/3 to 1/2 c. mayonnaise or salad dressing 1 level T. diced onion Dash paprika
Combine all ingredients, mixing well. Refrigerate until ready to fill shells using about 1 tsp. filling. Start with 1/3 c. mayo or dressing so the filling doesn’t get too loose. You can fill them about one hour ahead; refrigerate. The shells won’t get soggy. If you have leftover fillings, make a sandwich.
TANGY PORK MEATBALLS 2 eggs, beaten 2/3 c. dried bread crumbs 2 T. dried minced onion or 1 T. fresh onion, minced 2 t. seasoned salt 2 lbs. ground pork (not pork sausage)
Sauce: 1-1/2 c. ketchup 1 – 8 oz. can tomato sauce 3 T. Worcestershire sauce 2-3 T. cider vinegar 1 to 2 t. liquid smoke, optional
In a large bowl, combine first four ingredients mixing well. Crumble pork over mixture and mix well. Shape into 3/4 in. balls (don’t make them large); place on a greased 15 x 10-inch (jelly roll pan)baking pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until meat is no longer pink. Meanwhile, in a large pan or Dutch oven, combine sauce ingredients. Simmer (don’t boil), uncovered for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add meatballs. Serve in a slow-cooker or chafing dish. Makes about 7 dozen.
This is a great spread to make ahead of time.
DRIED BEEF SPREAD 1 2-1/2 oz. sliced dried beef 2 – 8 oz. pkgs. Cream cheese, cubed 2 T. milk 1 T. chopped green onion 1/2 t. dried dill weed 1/4 t. hot pepper sauce (Tabasco sauce) Crackers or party rye bread
Put beef in a food processor or blender; cover and process until chopped. Add remaining ingredients except crackers and bread; cover and process until well blended. Makes 2 c.
Thought for the Day: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If you drink alcoholic beverages please do it in moderation. Be smart! Wishing you a happy, healthy New Year.