2 Easy Holiday Appetizers (Great for Easter)!
Entertaining or Need Something to Bring?
Be the foodie star without upstaging the hostess too much. Here are two recipes that all my friends ask for whenever I've brought them to an event or entertained in my home. Both are relatively easy to make and can be done ahead of time; great for any brunch or dinner; perfect for cocktail gatherings. Serve both with a crisp Chardonnay and you can't go wrong.
Green Trees & Asian Sesame-Orange Dip
Simple. Delicious. Who could ask for anything more?
- 1 pound asparagus spears, trimmed (bottom 2-1/2 inches cut off)
- ½ pound broccoli spears
- 2/3 cup mayonnaise
- 2 Tbl. Soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- Grated zest of 1 orange
- 2 teaspoons fresh orange juice
Pour about 1 inch of water in a large skllet and bring it to a boil over high heat. Generously salt the water. Add the asparagus, return the water to a boil and cook 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the asparagus immediately and plunge into a bowl of cold water. Drain the asparagus well and pat dry. To the skillet, add another 1 cup water. Bring again to a boil, and add the broccoli. Cover, and cook for 1-2 minutes, just al dente. Drain immediately and rinse under very cold water. Drain & Pat dry.
In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, soy sauce, sesame oil, ½ the grated orange zest, and the orange juice.
Arrange the vegetables on a platter attractively. Place a ramekin or small serving bowl on the platter to one side or in the center; fill it with the dip. Sprinkle with the remaining orange zest.
Serves about 10 to 12 as an appetizer.
Herbed Salmon Eggs
This isn't difficult to make, but it's beautiful and impressive.
- 1 dozen hard-cooked eggs, preferably medium* – peeled
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- ¼ cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill + extra sprigs for garnish
- 2 teaspoon finely snipped chives
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon coarse salt
- 2 oz. fine Nova Scotia smoked salmon, sliced in thin strips
Slice the eggs in half lengthwise. Carefully remove yolks and place in a mixing bowl. Mash well with a potato masher or fork. Add the remaining ingredients except the salmon & the extra dill sprigs for garnish. Stir well to blend. If you have a cookie press or a piping bag, use a star-tip to pipe the mixture into the eggs. Another method is to put the filling into a zip-loc bag, cut a small hole in one corner, and squeeze the filling into the egg halves. Otherwise, just use a spoon. Arrange 1 or 2 thin slices of the salmon attractively on the top of each egg half. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour. Garnish each egg half with a tiny sprig of dill. Makes 24 hors’ de oeuvres.
*I like to use medium eggs for stuffing, as they are smaller and less awkward to eat when standing.
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