I can hardly stand it! Christmas is almost here... just around the corner... it's a week away. Where has the time gone? It seems that no matter how hard we try to get everything accomplished ahead of time - whether shopping, wrapping, cooking, cleaning - there's always something that gets forgotten or accidentally put on the back burner. We've all been there. Some of us more than others. While we love the energy and the excitement that comes with the holiday season, we find ourselves harried, a bit over-stressed and wishing there were more hours in the day.
For those of you who will be entertaining visiting friends and family in the next couple of weeks, I've pulled together some fun and fairly simple appetizers that can be put together at the last minute.
1. A fruit and cheese platter will always please. Select from both hard and soft cheese, sliced breads, crackers, cheese straws. Offer sliced pears, apples, blackberries, raspberries and grapes for color.
2. Little phyllo shells can be filled with just about anything: spinach and feta, baked brie, hummus, tomatoes, basil and mozzarella and drizzled with balsamic vinegar, mushroom and gorgonzola, chicken salad, egg salad, sausage and cheese. Basically anything you want to fill them with you can. They come pre-made and all you have to do is fill them!
3. Miniature meatballs served on decorative toothpicks or forks are fun, festive and easy to eat.
4. Pigs in a blanket. Does one ever really outgrow these? Perhaps serve with an assortment of mustards.
5. Stuffed mushrooms
6. miniature polenta bites
7. Potato Pancakes, either on their own with toppings on the side or topped with creme fraiche
8. Nuts, pretzels and chips served elegantly in silver serving dishes
9. Assorted olives and cornichons
10. grilled zucchini roll ups stuffed with herbed cheese