Wasabi Devilled Eggs– 8 hard boiled eggs ( cut into 16  halves ), scoop out the yolk centers of the eggs and mash them up with 1/2 cup of miracle whip, 1 tsp of salt & pepper, 1 tbsp of wasabi, 4 tsp of fresh diced chives, (paprika and chives to garnish). Cream together and scoop into a small baggie, seal, cut the corner and pipe it back into the white’s of the egg. Refrigerate. Great starter for summer BBQ’s or try topping your potato salad with a ring of these babies!

Cherry Tomato Bursts – This one’s so simple! Cut 1/3 of the top off tiny tomatoes, if they are ripe you only have to slightly squeeze them and shake the inside out to make room for filling – without damaging the tomato of course. Place the filling (boursin herb & garlic creamed cheese) into a baggie and soften it with massaging the outside of the baggie with your hands. When it’s pliable enough to squeeze, cut the corner and pipe the filling into the tomato’s. Sprinkle with basil. Refrigerate! You can’t stop popping these little guys into your mouthSweet Onion Blossom – Clean the amount of Spanish onions you will need, for appetizers you want about 1 onion per 2 -3 people. Cut the onion into 16 quarters, but don’t cut the onion all the way through, leave 1cm uncut at the bottom. (good luck!) Most people would batter them and then deep fry them but a healthier alternative is to wrap them bottom in tinfoil, leaving an air space at the top for steam to escape. Place onions on a baking pan, and bake in a 400 F oven for 40 minutes. Or BBQ them in the same method. Carefully peel the tinfoil back, and place on a plate if desired. Drizzle 2  tbsp of melted butter over the onion, followed by sprinkling ¼ cup of seasoned crushed dried croutons over the buttered onion. Serve hot with this delicious dip. Cajun Dip: (per onion) ½ cup miracle whip, 2 tsp mustard, 1 tsp Cajun or 1 tsp cayenne powder. 1 tsp of Tarragon. (optional 1/2 tsp horseradish) Whip together until blended.

A Variety of Cheese and Fruit Platter with some complimentary Crackers goes a long way if your having wine drinkers over for an evening. Make sure you serve cheese of different textures and taste.

Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese Bagels – Use mini bagels, generously spread with herb cream cheese, add a layer of smoked salmon, top with sliced red onion and capers. You can toast the bagels before if desired. These can be eaten cold or heated.

Stuffed Mushroom Caps – Using a paring knife, cut the stems off and hollow out he mushrooms. Stuff with your favorite Turkey stuffing recipe and dunk the tops right into some Parmesan cheese. Bake in a 375 degree oven for about an hour. When the mushroom shrinks back and the stuffing has risen a bit they are done. These are deadly good! Especially when you add some bacon bits into the stuffing mix!

Here’s the Cheddar Cheese & Bacon Mushroom Caps – same recipe as above but add cheddar cheese & bacon Mmm.

Veggie Platter with Cool Dill Dip – Wash and cut up your favorite veggies and lay them nicely on a platter. For the dip mix together 1 cup of miracle whip and 1 cup of sour cream. Add 2 tbsp of dried dill, 2 tsp of onion powder, 1 tsp of garlic, 1 tsp of salt. Blend well. Refrigerate dip for an hour before serving. Another easy dip is simply mixing a package of onion soup mix into a 500ml tub of sour cream.

Zesty Spinach Dip & Sourdough Bread – In a bowl mix together 1/4 cup of Zesty Italian Dressing, 1 & 1/2 cups of sour cream, 1 cup of miracle whip,  1 tsp of minced garlic, 1 pkg of 7 vegetable instant soup mix, 1 pkg of frozen chopped spinach (thawed and water pressed out). Mix together and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving. Tear up a fresh loaf of Sourdough bread and it makes for a tasty appetizer.

Smoked Salmon on Crackers – Smoked Salmon is available at your local meat deli – serve it up with crackers, cream cheese & capers.

Appetizer Night – when your creating a night of Tapa’s make sure your trays are all bite size pieces, easily edible with just your fingers.

Pig in a Poke – Simply wrap cocktail wieners in refrigerator dough and bake in a 325 degree oven until dough is golden brown. Stab each piggy with a pretzel for a no mess, no utensils appy. Put out some interesting mustard’s for dipping.

Mexican Bean Salad Dip – 1- 540 ml tin black beans , drained and rinsed. 1 ½  – 2 cups raw corn (2 cobbs) cut off the cob, 1 large avocado, ½ finely chopped red & yellow bell pepper, ½ finely chopped red onion, 1 lg fresh tomato – if tomato’s are out of season I use sundried tomatoes or use 10 cherry tomatoes, ¼  cup of chopped cilantro. Dressing: juice of 1 fresh squeezed lime, 3 tbsp olive oil, 3 tbsp of rice vinegar, 1 clove garlic grated, 1 tbsp cumin, 1 tbsp of chilli powder, 1 tsp of s & p  – Goes great with Tostitos!

Cheeseball – 2 pkgs (8 oz) of softened creamed cheese, 2 cups of grated Old Cheddar cheese, 3 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce, 4 green onions sliced thinly, 2 tbsp of lemon juice, 1 tsp salt & pepper, 1 tsp garlic powder. 4 tsp of dried dill to roll the cheeseball in afterwards. Method: In a large bowl press all ingredients together with a sturdy fork, and cream it well. This takes some time (I get hubby to do it, cuz he’s so big and strong – that’s how I ask – lol) Use your hands to form into a ball. This recipe makes one big cheese ball or you can make 2 smaller ones. Roll them in the dill and then suran wrap for the fridge. They will keep in the fridge for a week – you can freeze them (the texture changes and they are more crumbly after). Serve them with crackers and if you actually have leftovers try stuffing it into a chicken breast or spreading it on a sandwich.

Freshly baked French Stick Bread with melted Brie & Sour Grapes.

I can never seem to get enough of these types of platters – I could live off this stuff!

Try fresh cucumbers from the garden with a sprinkle of 1/2 Apple Cider Vinegar & 1/2 Rice Vinegar, dash of dill and Salt & Pepper.

Start with a Flatbread – load it up with Havarti Cheese, Fried Onions, Fresh Basil, Green Olives, and Tiny Tim Tomatoes.

Pork Skewers – Choose thin fast fry boneless chops, slice them into thirds length ways and carefully apply them to short skewers. Pork marinade: ½ cup brown sugar, 2 tbsp vinegar, 1/8 cup water,  1/8 cup soya sauce, 2 tbsp lemon juice, ½ tsp garlic powder, 2 tbsp sesame seeds. Bring to a boil in a skillet for 5 minutes, turn down to medium heat and add skewers of pork. Cook for 15 minutes, making sure all the pork gets marinated in the juices.

Baked Brie – So easy! On a small tray bake your brie in the oven at 400 degrees for 10 minutes – transfer to a serving plate and cover it with walnuts and sweet chili sauce. Toppings are endless here too! Serve with good crackers.

Pot Stickers – A great frozen product that’s easy to serve at a party. They are inexpensive and tasty. I always buy the pork, there are a few different kinds as well as a vegetarian option. Stir fry in a pan with some sesame oil until golden brown then sprinkle with sesame seeds and chopped green onion. Serve with a combination of peanut satay sauce mixed with sweet chili sauce. These don’t last long!

Salami Rolls – These just might be the easiest things to make but pack a great punch of flavors. My sister served these at Christmas. Use a good quality salami. Spread herb cream cheese on them, add a baby dill pickle and roll up and stab with a toothpick. Told ya it was easy!

Antipasto Skewers – A meal on a stick is how satisfying these appies are. Everyone loves them and you can add different things to the sticks like cherry tomatoes, marinated mushrooms, onions, pickles, peppers or artichokes. I use a multicolored cheese tortellini fresh pasta (boiled, seasoned and marinated in a light salad dressing for 4 hours) and cut up chunks of Jalapeno Havarti and Summer Sausage with Garlic stuffed Olives. I use the shorter skewers, they are a hit at parties.

Meat & Cheese Platter – Here’s a platter that you can make ahead and pull out near the end of the night. When I host a party I like to put this platter out around 11:00pm just before everyone heads home. Serve it with buns and condiments, maybe some finely shredded slaw tossed lightly in vinegar & oil. Let people help themselves and make mini sandwiches on a nice soft bun. The late night protein and carb after drinking really helps you sleep better – don’t ask me why, It just does!


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