Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Easy Appetizers

I LOVE Christmas decorations. Not all decorations though...mostly the greenery. Garland on the mantel, a few boxwood wreaths and fresh pine everywhere. NEVER an inflatable of any kind (unless it's a bounce house or two like Stacey got for Randall's birthday this year). Anyway, I love decorating for Christmas but what's the point if you can't have friends and family over to your house to ohh and ahh over your work?

So, with that in mind, here are three of my favorite easy appetizers you can whip together in minutes for a holiday party or any night that unexpected guests drop by.

Holy guacamole! This is David's go-to guacamole recipe and it's awesome. It also just happens to be printed on a magnet that hangs on our fridge which is convenient because we make guacamole just about every week.

If you can throw everything in a bowl, mix it together and let it sit for a half hour in the fridge to marry the flavors, you've got a delicious appetizer to serve with tortilla chips.

And here's a tip David taught me to keep the guacamole from turning brown. Before you put it in the fridge, cover it with a piece of cling wrap and really press it down to get rid of all the air bubbles between the guacamole and wrap. Then apply the lid and the guacamole will stay fresh and green for days.

This next recipe is perfect if you've only got 10 minutes or if you're just helpless in the kitchen. Introducing brie bites. If you can put chunks of brie and raspberry jam into a frozen mini phyllo dough shell (available in most grocery stores in the freezer sections), and bake in the oven for 8 minutes at 350 degrees, you've got lovely little appetizers that will completely disappear when your guests arrive. And if you don't like raspberry jam, you can use strawberry, apricot or whatever flavor of preserves you prefer.

Finally we have garlic butter roasted mushrooms. Stacey discovered this recipe about a year ago and we've been OD'ing on it ever since. I mean we'll sit down and eat a pound of garlic butter roasted mushrooms, just sopping up all the sauce with an entire baguette. It's just so damn good. Recipe here. 

Hopefully this gives you some quick and easy appetizer ideas that you can whip up and impress your guests without adding stress to this already hectic time of year. Happy cooking!

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