I, much to his chagrin, wanted to make some simple appetizers for his get-together.
Easy, fast things that I could finish while Liam napped. He naps a lot. This is what I decided on.
Rosemary almonds, Gorgonzola puff pastry bites, spiced olives, pepper crackers with cream cheese, smoked salmon, and caviar, and warm dates stuff with almonds with sea salt and lime zest.
Almonds on the left, cheesy, salty, yummy Gorgonzola puff pastry on the right.
Both very simple. The almonds are just sautéed in butter, salt, rosemary, garlic, and Worcestershire sauce and then roasted for 10 minutes. Worsh-te-shister-shawwww.....
The Gorgonzola bites are embarrassingly simple. Roll out puff pastry, press crumbled Gorgonzola into it, sprinkle on fresh cracked pepper, cut into squares, then bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
Olives on the left. Just toss good-quality olives in olive oil, minced garlic, lemon zest strips, and red pepper flakes. Let them hang out at room temperature for a while for everything to get to know each other.
Pepper water crackers topped with smoked salmon and caviar. I made more than 6, I swear.
The best thing! These dates are to die for.
Remove the pits from Medjool dates and stuff each one with a roasted almond. Sauté for 3-4 minutes in extra virgin olive oil, then remove them (with a slotted spoon or tongs) to a bowl and toss with coarse sea salt and fresh lime zest.
Seriously. So good.
All of these things were very easy to make and took very little labor and time, less than an hour, which was nice for me.
Appetizers are a great way to entertain, so much less fuss than a full meal, and everyone can pick what they want and graze throughout the evening. It's also way easier to clean up!