Sunday, May 2, 2010

Appetizers in a Pinch!

When I was in college, I worked for a local caterer, who just happened to be my next door neighbor and mother of my boyfriend at the time (weird, I know.)  But, I learned a TON of event planning knowledge from her and to this day, I consider her a kind of back-up mom.
One of the best things I learned from her is that people like "real food." Nobody wants to go down a buffet line and try to figure out what in the hell they are about to try. Now, you could always have menu cards to identify certain dishes, but people still would avoid anything they considered weird. How many weddings have you been to where you just thought, "ugh gross...strange unidentifiable canapes?"

So, in the spirit of "real food," here are some of my go-to appetizers that people LOVE and always are a hit.


Twice Baked New Potatoes (a carryover from that college job).

One bag of small new potatoes (you can find the really small ones in the produce section, NOT with the potatoes, like with the squash). 
Olive Oil
Butter
Sour Cream
Salt and Pepper
Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Green Onions
Bacon

Preheat Oven to 450. Rub new potatoes with olive oil and place on a sheet pan in oven.
Cook for 30 minutes, or until brown with crispy skin. Remove from oven and let cool slightly on counter.
Cute potatoes in half and scoop out filling with spoon. Don't remove all the filling or else the skins will be too flimsy.  Combine potato filling with butter, sour cream, salt, pepper, cheddar cheese, and bacon to taste. Place filling back inside potatoes and top with green onions and additional cheddar. Bake until warm and cheese is melted.

These babies hold great in a chafing dish and I guarantee you people will be begging for more.


Go to Tastykitchen.com and see this wonderful "Addictive Corn Dip" that is perfect for your next bunco, or Cinco De Mayo party!






This Sun Dried Tomato and Pesto Layered Spread is one of my all-time favorites. SO easy and SO flavorful!










I love to cook, but I didn't discover this until I started staying home--it's amazing what a little time on your hands will do for your culinary skills!

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