Happy New Year, Blogland! Wishing you all a healthy and happy 2010!
I hope you all had a wonderful and safe NYE! Mine started off well — we booked a trip to Vegas April 2-4th! Yay!
I was a busy bee last night and must share with you all our delicious appetizers! Heavy appetizers as a meal is one of my favorite ways to eat!
Roma tomatoes, sliced
fresh mozzarella, sliced
fresh basil leaves
French baguette, sliced
Toast baguette slices until edges start to brown — about 10-15 minutes at 350 F. Place tomato and cheese on to slices. Sprinkle with salt, lightly. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and then olive oil. Top with fresh basil leave.
Mini Corn Bread Crab Cakes with Lemon-Caper Sauce (Source: Cooking Light)
Bake the corn bread up to three days in advance, and keep in a zip-top plastic bag. Combine the sauce ingredients and assemble the crab cakes the night before; refrigerate separately. Any leftover crab cakes are terrific with a green salad.
Yield: 16 servings (serving size: 1 crab cake and about 1 teaspoon mayonnaise mixture)
1/3 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon capers, drained and chopped
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
1/8 teaspoon minced garlic
Dash of freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1/3 cup finely diced red bell pepper
1/3 cup finely diced green bell pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce
1 teaspoon (30%-less-sodium) Old Bay seasoning
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 cups crumbled Buttermilk Corn Bread
1 pound lump crabmeat, shell pieces removed
Fresh chives (optional)
To prepare sauce, combine first 8 ingredients; chill.
Preheat oven to 400°.
To prepare crab cakes, heat oil in a small nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, bell peppers, and garlic to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Remove from heat; cool. Combine bell pepper mixture, 1/4 cup mayonnaise, and next 6 ingredients (through Old Bay); stir in egg. Fold in Buttermilk Corn Bread and crabmeat. Scoop mixture into 16 portions (about 1/4 cup each) onto 2 baking sheets coated with cooking spray. Lightly cover, and refrigerate 1 hour. Uncover and bake at 400° for 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from baking sheet with a metal spatula. Serve with sauce. Garnish with chives, if desired.
Calories:83 (35% from fat); Fat:3.2g (sat 0.6g,mono 0.8g,poly 0.3g) ; Protein:7.4g; Carbohydrate:6.4g; Fiber:0.5g; Cholesterol:38mg; Iron:0.6mg; Sodium:317mg; Calcium:54mg
Crostini with Gorgonzola, Caramelized Onions, and Fig Jam (Source: Cooking Light)
Yield: 12 servings (serving size: 2 crostini)
1 cup dried Black Mission figs (about 6 ounces)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 cups water
2 tablespoons maple syrup
Dash of salt
2 cups vertically sliced yellow onion
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup water (optional)
1/2 cup (4 ounces) Gorgonzola cheese, softened
24 (1-inch-thick) slices diagonally cut French bread baguette, toasted (about 12 ounces)
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
To prepare jam, remove stems from figs. Place figs and juice in a food processor; process until figs are coarsely chopped. Place fig mixture, 2 cups water, syrup, and dash of salt in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes or until thick. Cool completely.
To prepare onions, heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat. Add onion, vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cover and cook 5 minutes. Uncover and cook 20 minutes or until onion is deep golden brown, stirring occasionally. While onion cooks, add 1/2 cup water, 1/4 cup at a time, to keep onion from sticking to pan.
Spread 1 teaspoon cheese over each baguette slice. Top each slice with about 1 teaspoon onion mixture and 1 teaspoon jam. Sprinkle evenly with thyme leaves.
Calories:106 (29% from fat); Fat:3.4g (sat 1.9g,mono 0.9g,poly 0.3g); Protein:2.9g; Carbohydrate:16.3g; Fiber:2.4g; Cholesterol:8mg; Iron:0.6mg; Sodium:82mg; Calcium:85mg
Parmesan Zucchini Sticks with Smoky Roasted Romesco Sauce (Source: Cooking Light)
Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 6 zucchini sticks and 1/4 cup sauce)
3 medium red bell peppers
2 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1/2 cup (1/2-inch) cubed French bread baguette, crusts removed
1 1/2 tablespoons smoked almonds
1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 large garlic clove
3 large zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup egg substitute
1. Preheat broiler.
2. To prepare sauce, cut bell peppers in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membranes. Place bell pepper halves and tomatoes, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten bell peppers with hand. Broil 10 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand 15 minutes. Peel and coarsely chop, reserving any liquid.
3. Combine bell peppers, reserved liquid, tomatoes, and next 8 ingredients (through garlic) in a blender or food processor; process until smooth.
4. Preheat oven to 400°.
5. To prepare zucchini, cut 1 zucchini in half crosswise; cut each half lengthwise into 8 wedges. Repeat procedure with remaining zucchini. Combine breadcrumbs, panko, cheese, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and black pepper in a shallow dish. Dip zucchini in egg substitute; dredge in breadcrumb mixture. Place zucchini on a wire rack coated with cooking spray. Lightly coat zucchini with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately with sauce.
Calories:170 (30% from fat); Fat:5.6g (sat 1.3g,mono 2.5g,poly 1.3g); Protein:8.4g; Carbohydrate:23.4g; Fiber:3.9g; Cholesterol:3mg; Iron:1.9mg; Sodium:434mg; Calcium:107mg
Order of appetizer preference from the hubby:
1. Caprese (“…because I was craving it”)
2. crostini with gorgonzola and fig (“it had a really unique taste”)
3. zucchini sticks (“really good and healthy, but the sauce needed more kick”)
4. crab cakes (“good, but lemony”)
Order of appetizer preference from the chef:
1. crostini with gorgonzola and fig (“pain to make, but so unique and flavorful!”)
2. Caprese (“Can you go wrong when you combine those ingredients? No way, Jose! Yum!”)
3. crab cakes (“Crumbly, but delicious! Very lemony. May go easier on the capers next time.”)
4. zuccini sticks (“Really good, but next time I will buy red peppers instead of allowing my cheap husband to talk me into using orange because we already had them. Sauce needed some kick, but the sticks were delish!”)
Question 1: Do you know the difference between “appetizers” and “hors d’oeuvres”? 😉 There is a difference!
Hint: some of my “apps” are probably more fitting in a “hors d’oeuvres” category!
Question 2: Have you been to Las Vegas? Where is your favorite place to stay? Anything we MUST do?
Off for a hot date with the treadmill to get this year started right! Also on the schedule today: black eyed peas and kale chips! Maybe even watching Food, Inc. with the in-laws! I’m excited!
Happy New Year!