Delicious Appetizers Vegetarian Style-Fast and Easy
Whenever we have a party, my husband always wants to know if I plan to make stuffed mushrooms. He thinks they are the best appetizer he has ever eaten and wants to share them with our guests. They are so easy to make I usually make an extra large batch before we entertain and pop them into the oven when our guests begin arriving.
The smell of them cooking makes my mouth water, and since I am the official taste tester, I eat one as soon as they come out of the oven. If I don't, they are usually gone before I get a chance since they are so delicious. You may want to consider making a double batch.
- 1 quart fresh mushrooms
- 1/2 bag stove top stuffing (any flavor)
- 4 ounces soft spinach artichoke cream cheese
- 3 ounces grated cheese (your favorite type)
- Wash mushrooms and remove stems. Chop stems into pieces and places them In a small bowl, and mix cream cheese and dry stuffing mix until all stuffing mix is coated with cream cheese. With a spoon, overfill each mushroom cap with mixture and place on a baking sheet. Top each mushroom cap with grated cheese—heat the oven to 350 degrees and bake for 45 minutes, or until mushrooms are cooked through.
- When cooking is complete place on a decorative platter and serve hot to your guests.
Spicy Cucumber Treats
- 1 cucumber
- 2 radishes
- sesame seeds
- 1/2 cup cashew nuts
- 9 tablespoons beet juice
- 2 tablespoons oil
- Salt, to taste
- Cayenne pepper
- lime juice
- Soak Cashews for 3 hours in lukewarm water. Drain and rinse the nuts, then use a food processor with the beet juice, oil, line juice, and seasonings; blend the ingredients into a thick paste.
- Scoop the paste into a pastry bag and place it in the freezer for 20 minutes to thicken.
- Cut the cucumber and radishes into thin slices.
- Construct the treats with a cucumber slice, squeeze a dab of beet paste onto the cucumber, then position a piece of radish on top of the beet paste, and then Scatter each treat with sesame seeds and garnish with a sprig of parsley.
Tasty Bruschetta for a Savory or Sweet Treat
Bruschetta is an Italian antipasto that begins with a bottom slice of grilled hard bread. The bread is eaten warm with a topping spooned over or a topping on the side so each person can build their bruschetta. Bruschetta is used as a portion of hand-held finger edibles, large enough for a couple of bites.
A sweet version is strawberry cream cheese topped with strawberry jam and a fresh strawberry. You can also use peanut butter with a piece of chocolate topped with chocolate syrup.
You can also try puff pastry squares for the base and top with the desired fruits or vegetables.
Veggie Trays for Clean Eating
My old standby appetizer is a vegetable tray of fresh produce. All that needs doing is to clean and peel fresh produce, then cut it into bite-sized pieces. I like to balance out the different colors of veggies to balance out the tray. Once they are arranged, I usually leave a space in the center of the tray to place a small bowl of dip.
An alternate version can be made using fresh fruits. My dip of choice is made with yogurt and honey. Many people prefer to eat the fruit without the dip.
I use small plates so my guest can fill their dishes with the desired amounts of appetizers. If I serve them outdoors, I use paper plates for safety and easy clean-up.
Yogurt Dip for Fruit Appetizers
1 6-ounce carton plain or vanilla Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup or honey
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
In a small bowl, blend yogurt, maple syrup, or honey, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. If preferred, scatter the dip with extra ground cinnamon. Serve fruit with dip.
If you will be serving this to a large gathering, double the quantity of yogurt dip you create and keep some of it stocked in the fridge. Then you can replenish the bowl with chilled fruit dip throughout the gathering.
I like to store the unused portion in covered small bowls in the refrigerator for easy replacement. It saves me time during my party and leaves me with more time to spend with my guests.
This fruit dip is easy to make ahead of time. You may want to substitute plain yogurt for a fruit one. It is important to choose which type of yogurt to use depending on your fruits. The fruit choices are determined by which fruits are in season. Sometimes during the winter month, apples alone may be enough for a sweet treat.