CHARRED BRUSSEL SPROUTS

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CHARRED BRUSSEL SPROUTS

Fresh steamed brussel sprouts charred in a little extra virgin olive oil. Tossed with garlic, smoked paprika, fresh grind sea salt and black pepper. Served with Ball Park Mustard mixed with a little veggie mayo! Serve as hors d’oeuvre or side dish vegetable. Low fat!

Serves 6

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TOMATO NUT HUMMUS

TOMATO NUT HUMMUS PLATTER

TOMATO NUT HUMMUS

A wonderful hummus. Yes, a tomato nut hummus. I make the rules in my kitchen. No beans in this dip. This is the most unfamiliar tasting recipe. The only things familiar are the flatbread and the fact that it’s a dip. Flavors, textures all new! Except that you won’t miss the lamb that generally accompanies the meal. Best to serve it hot though, or at least warm. Your guests will be returning for more, and more and…

Makes 4-3/4 cups

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BOILED PISTACHIO NUTS

BOILED PISTACHIO APPETIZER 1

BOILED PISTACHIO NUTS

Ever hear of boiled peanuts? Well, I had only pistachios on hand and I just decided to boil them, and WOWE! Thank you to whomever put that boiled peanut bug in my ear – long ago. If not for that, I never would have known this other pleasure! These are my mussels!

Makes as many as you want

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EGGPLANT TOMATO CREAM SPREAD

  EGGPLANT TOMATO CREAM  SPREAD
Looks rustic, tastes elegant, feels luxurious!
Makes 2 cups

4 T. extra virgin olive oil

4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

1 med. eggplant (a little more than 1 lb.), unpeeled, cut into 3/8 inch cubes (no larger)

salt and black pepper to taste

4 fresh Italian (Roma) tomatoes, seeded and diced

2 t. dried basil

1/4 t. dried oregano

1 t. smoked paprika

very light sprinkling red cayenne pepper

1 t. fresh lemon juice

1/2 c. Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese

salt and pepper

1 French baguette (long, narrow loaf French bread), thinly sliced and broiled on one side till golden, then brushed with extra virgin olive oil

additional smoked paprika


In large skillet, over low heat, heat oil. Add garlic, then cook till softened, being careful not to brown it. If you do brown it, it’s okay, as long as it isn’t burned.

Add eggplant cubes all at once. Salt and pepper, then stir to coat with oil. Raise heat to medium and keep stirring till eggplant begins to shrink a little. Cook 15 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally (much of eggplant will be soft at this point).

Add tomatoes, basil, oregano, smoked paprika, red cayenne pepper and lemon juice. Stir well, then cover and cook on low heat for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Adjust for salt as you cook. When done, eggplant and tomato will be very soft & mushy–like a spread.

If after 45 minutes there is still liquid in the skillet, raise heat back to medium or medium-high and cook, stirring often till all liquid evaporates and spread is as dry as possible.

Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Add Tofutti Cream Cheese. Stir to completely incorporate, salt and pepper to taste, then cover and refrigerate till ready to serve.

Transfer spread to serving dish. Serve with slices of French baguette, broiled on one side, then brushed with extra virgin olive oil. Sprinkle entire presentation with a little smoked paprika.


Notes: Purchase ripe eggplant – one that gives in to pressure when squeezed. Cut into small cubes; large cubes will require longer cooking time and will not soften properly.

You only need 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice – any more will make it too acidic. The temptation is always to use more, or to use what you squeezed.

If taking this spread on a picnic where you’ll be grilling out, toast oiled baguette slices on grill for an added charred treat.

Although you can serve this immediately upon making it, it textures thicker and creamier when refrigerated a few hours before serving. Great both ways!

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ROASTED RATATOUILLE ANTIPASTO

ROASTED RATATOUILLE ANTIPASTO

A really easy, flavorful antipasto that requires little effort or time!

Makes about 4 cups

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PINEAPPLE BEAN SALSA SOUP – or dip

PINEAPPLE SALSA

PINEAPPLE BEAN SALSA SOUP – or dip

This is my gazpacho – upticked all the way to the moon and back. The longer it marinates, the more subtle the flavors. Some like the old, some like the new! Serve as a cold appetizer soup or a dip with tortilla chips!

Makes 9 cups

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TOMATO WALNUT TAPENADE

TOMATO WALNUT TAPENADE

Sun-dried tomatoes, walnuts and Kalamata olives are the center of this tomato based tapenade. Rich. Smooth but textured. Potent and subtle at the same time.  A great tapenade for home entertainment or restaurant appetizer!

Makes 4-1/2 cups

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THE BIG GAME DIP

THE BIG GAME DIP

This is a big dip for a big day. It makes a lot so you won’t run out. Bold and subtle flavors – crunchy, meaty and smooth textures – make this a perfect party dip for all tastes!

Makes 3-1/2 cups

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APPLE TAPENADE

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APPLE TAPENADE

Hot, spicy, salty, sweet, sour, acrid, tart means powerful. Serve as appetizer with toast points or French baguette, or with your favorite pasta and marinara sauce on the same dish so the juices can mingle. Heaven on a plate!

Makes 7 cups

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BLACKENED CAULIFLOWER BUDS

BLACKENED CAULIFLOWER BUDS

Steamed cauliflower buds coated with a dry batter mix, then pan-fried with garlic till blackened. Served with a sweet onion mustard sauce! Perfect for restaurant or home!

Serves 2-4 as a first course (sit down to eat) appetizer

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HORS D’OEUVRE PLATTER

HORS D’OEUVRE PLATTER

Caponata Babaganoush and hummus spreads served with grilled pita triangles. Kalamata olives, capers and Pickled Roasted Yellow Peppers serve as accompaniments. Garnish it all with chopped fresh parsley, serve and listen to the raves!

Serves 6

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CAPONATA BABAGANOUSH

ITALIAN BABAGANOUSH

CAPONATA BABAGANOUSH

Roasted eggplant combined with a mushroom, red wine and garlic reduction. Finished with toasted sesame seed, tomato and Gia Russa Balsamic glaze! Served with grilled pita bread and/or sliced French baguette and sides of capers and/or chopped Kalamata olive!

Makes 3-1/2 cups

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CRANBERRY BLACK BEAN SALSA

CRANBERRY BLACK BEAN SALSA

Whole cranberry sauce, black beans and sweet mini peppers combined with chunky salsa, fresh cilantro and lemon. Served with white corn tortilla chips. Wow! My new favorite salsa!

Makes 4 cups

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MUSHROOM AND BREAD PATE

MUSHROOM AND BREAD PATE

A unique way of making, presenting and enjoying mushroom pate! By adding fresh Italian breadcrumbs to the mix, the glutenous nature of the bread, when left to set in the refrigerator overnight creates a pate you can slice with no detraction from the pate or its mushroom flavor!

Makes 2 small or 1 larger pate

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MUSHROOM PATE SANDWICH SPREAD

MUSHROOM PATE SANDWICH SPREAD

Homemade mushroom pate with red wine, sweet onion, garlic and cracked pepper mixed with Silken tofu to create a delicious, creamy textured sandwich spread. Can also be served, minus the tofu, as a mushroom pate appetizer!

Makes 3 cups

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GLUTEN-FREE SAFFRON SUN-DRIED TOMATO DIP

GLUTEN-FREE SAFFRON SUN-DRIED TOMATO DIP

Sun-dried tomatoes, celery, raw onion and garlic, fresh lime, orange zest and saffron. Mixed with Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream. Garnished with celery leaves and paprika. Served with potato chips!

Makes 2 cups

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COCKTAIL HORS D’OEUVRE SANDWICHES

 COCKTAIL HORS D’OEUVRE SANDWICHES

A quick, easy, delicious, satisfying hors d’oeuvre sandwich. Made with Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese, veggie salami, scallion and garlic. Spread on rye cocktail bread, cut into triangles!

Makes  a little more than 1-½ cups spread, enough for 1 sleeve of cocktail bread

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GLUTEN-FREE VEGGIE ‘SMOKED SALMON’ SPREAD

GLUTEN-FREE VEGGIE ‘SMOKED SALMON’ SPREAD

Made with Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese, Greek olives, sun-dried tomatoes, soy bacon bits, capers, roasted peppers and horseradish. Yes, it takes and textures like smoked salmon!

Makes 1-1/4 cups

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TAPENADE MOUSSE

TAPENADE MOUSSE

Kalamata olives, fresh garlic and onion processed till mealy, then combined with dairy-free cream cheese till smooth and mousse-like. Served with a ‘cutting board’ whole grain bread cut into chunks! Rustic and elegant – a perfect match!

Makes 2 cups

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BLACK & WHITE BAKED STUFFED ARTICHOKES

BLACK & WHITE BAKED STUFFED ARTICHOKES

Black and white fresh breadcrumbs mixed with cashew crumbles, garlic and lemon. Stuffed in pre-cooked fresh, whole artichokes and baked till steaming hot!

Makes 2

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SHARON’S ‘PEARL OYSTER’ STUFFED MUSHROOMS

SHARON’S ‘PEARL OYSTER’ STUFFED MUSHROOMS

Gourmet Pearl Oyster mushrooms combined with sauteed onion, celery, garlic and steamed eggplant. Mixed with fresh potato breadcrumbs, fine cashew crumbles, white wine and saffron. Stuffed into crimini and white button mushroom caps, baked till hot, then served with a saffron remoulade sauce!

Makes approx. 42 stuffed mushrooms – approx. 6 servings

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MARSALA MUSHROOM PATE

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MARSALA MUSHROOM PATE

Finely diced mushroom sauteed with roasted eggplant, sweet onion, garlic and Marsala wine. Served cold with French baguette slices, Marsala spicy brown mustard and sliced dill gherkin pickles.

Makes 2-1/4 cups

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PAN-FRIED VEGGIE SAUSAGE CANAPES

PAN-FRIED SOY SAUSAGE CANAPES

Served with spicy barbecue sauce and horseradish maple mustard sauce!

Makes 32 or 64 depending on size you prefer Continue reading “PAN-FRIED VEGGIE SAUSAGE CANAPES”

CLEVELAND CAULIFLOWER SHRIMP COCKTAIL

CLEVELAND CAULIFLOWER SHRIMP COCKTAIL

Flavors and textures of the sea without the sea. Nothing fishy here. Ever miss shrimp cocktail? This will do ya’ good!!

Serves 6-8 Continue reading “CLEVELAND CAULIFLOWER SHRIMP COCKTAIL”

TRULY TOMATO BRUSCHETTA

TRULY TOMATO BRUSCHETTA

Dei Fratelli’s Truly Tomatoes cooked with caramelized onion, garlic and Kalamata olives. Seasoned with fennel, smoke and allspice. Spread on Artisan baguette slices. Broiled, then drizzled with extra virgin olive oil!

Sauce makes 2 cups Continue reading “TRULY TOMATO BRUSCHETTA”

BOURBON BAKED BEAN SALSA

BOURBON BAKED BEAN SALSA

An American slant to Mexican bean salsa. Bourbon Baked Beans mixed with caramelized peppers and onion and pineapple salsa. Seasoned with fresh basil and mint! Serve with your favorite tortilla chips!

Makes 7 cups

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SPICY INDIAN SALSA

SPICY INDIAN SALSA

Indian flavors meld with the traditional flavors of Mexican salsa. Chili beans, scallions and Garam Masala spice. Exciting and different!  Serve with your favorite tortilla chips!

Makes 4 cups

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BLACK OLIVE MOUSSE

BLACK OLIVE MOUSSE

Soy cream cheese combined with black olive paste, basil and garlic. Hand-whipped till light and creamy! Served with assorted chopped pickles, mustard, assorted crackers and bread!

Makes 1-1/2 cups

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ROASTED PEPPER CASHEW CHEESE HORS D’OEUVRES

ROASTED PEPPER CASHEW CHEESE HORS D’OEUVRES

A cheesy mousse-like spread made from cashews, sweet red roasted peppers, sweet onion, garlic and nutritional yeast. Spooned onto lightly broiled potato bread rounds. Half topped with strips of roasted pepper and the other half topped with Kalamata olive strips. An elegant, melt in your mouth hors d’oeuvre! Can also be used on a sub sandwich.

Makes 3-1/2 cups spread

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MEATLESS PEPPERONI SOY CREAM CHEESE SPREAD

MEATLESS PEPPERONI SOY CREAM CHEESE SPREAD

with green scallion and fresh sweet red pepper! Served with Caramelized Onion Ritz Crackers!

Makes 1-3/4 cups

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BAKED STUFFED ARTICHOKES

BAKED STUFFED ARTICHOKES

Artichokes stuffed till bursting with an aromatic Kalamata olive, garlic, pine nut and lemon bread stuffing, then baked till steaming hot!

Makes 2

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MUSHROOM AND GARLIC HUMMUS MOUSSE

MUSHROOM AND GARLIC HUMMUS MOUSSE

with extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil spread, soy sour cream, basil and tarragon. Superb!

Makes 2-1/4 cups

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ROASTED PEPPER AND HORSERADISH CANAPES

ROASTED PEPPER AND HORSERADISH CANAPES

These delicious little canapés are impressively easy to make, especially when you have unexpected guests or don’t have the time to invest in something more intricate. I love them!

Makes as many as you want

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AVOCADO DIP FOR POTATO CHIPS

AVOCADO DIP FOR POTATO CHIPS

Fresh avocado combined with extra virgin olive oil, lemon, garlic, curry and horseradish, blended till creamy with non-dairy creamer. Served with potato chips!

Makes 1 cup

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ARTICHOKE ANTIPASTO HORS D’OUEVRE

ARTICHOKE ANTIPASTO HORS D’OEUVRE

Eggplant appetizer (caponata) mixed with marinated artichoke hearts and sweet red roasted peppers. Served with slices of fresh French baguette!

Makes 1-1/2 cups

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