5 Quick & Easy Appetizers for Your Holiday Party #SundaySupper

by Anne Papina on December 16, 2012

5 Quick & Easy Appetizers

Last weekend Morgan and I hosted our annual holiday party–something we look forward to every year. Certainly, there’s nothing like enjoying the good company of family and friends. We are, after all, very social creatures. So, when the #SundaySupper crew announced a holiday party theme for this weekend, I dove in. This week I have the pleasure of serving up five appetizers that are sure to tickle your taste buds: Spiced Pecans, Mini Sweet Potato Frittatas, Sour Cream Dip Florentine, Pesto Brie en Croute, and Bacon Cheese Toasts. Plus below is an assortment of beverages and even more appetizers from the rest of the #SundaySupper team.

Since this week’s post is long on recipes, I’m departing from my normal step-by-step pictorial format to fit everything in.

Spiced Pecans

First, let’s start with the Spiced Pecans. This is a recipe I’ve adapted from Saveur–the pecans are browned in butter, then tossed with rosemary, along with sugar and spice and everything nice! Seriously, you may want to double up as these are quite addictive, thanks to the perfect meld of sweet and spicy flavors.

Spiced Pecans

Spiced Pecans
 
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Browned in butter, these pecans are fragrant with a heady blend of rosemary and spices, with just a touch of sweetness thrown in.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Serves: 10
Ingredients
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp chopped rosemary
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp Tobasco
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Heat butter in a large skillet and brown pecans until toasted (about 5 minutes).
  2. Add remaining ingredients, stirring until pecans are well coated and fragrant (about another 2 minutes).
  3. Remove from heat, and transfer to parchment paper, spreading in a single layer. Cool completely.
  4. Makes 2 cups.

Mini Sweet Potato Frittatas

Now let’s move on to these Mini Sweet Potato Frittatas. While not as quick as the rest of the recipes here, they are a snap to throw together and are sure to impress. The blend of sweet potatoes with leeks and salty feta simply melts in your mouth. Since they can be served warm or at room temperature, these can be made ahead, so you’re not left with any last minute baking tasks. This recipe is adapted from Fingerfood by Bay Books.

Mini Sweet Potato Frittatas

Mini Sweet Potato Frittatas
 
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These frittatas are bursting with the flavors of sweet potatoes, leeks, and feta cheese.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 15
Ingredients
  • 1 lb sweet potatoes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 2 leeks, finely sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 4 oz crumbled feta cheese
  • 6 eggs
  • ¼ cup cream
  • pinch nutmeg
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350, and grease mini muffin tins.
  2. Cut sweet potatoes into small cubes and boil until tender (about 5 minutes). Drain.
  3. In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil and butter, and cook the leeks until soft and slightly golden. Stir in garlic and cook for an additional minute. Cool, then stir in the sweet potatoes and feta.
  4. Spoon a little sweet potato mixture into each muffin hole (about 1 tbsp.)
  5. Whisk together the eggs, cream, nutmeg and salt and pepper.
  6. Pour egg mixture into each muffin hole about three quarters full. Gently press down sweet potatoes.
  7. Bake 20 minutes or until golden.
  8. Let cool for about 5 minutes before removing from pan.
  9. Makes approximately 30.

Sour Cream Dip Florentine

Sour Cream Dip Florentine is simply a fancy name for spinach dip, I suppose, but it sounds so much better. The green onions and dill make this stand apart from the traditional version, and when paired with an array of winter veggies, it’ll be devoured with gusto. Who wants to delve into another platter of celery and carrots with ranch dip anyway? This recipe is adapted from McCall’s Cooking School.

Sour Cream Dip Florentine w/Winter Veggie Platter

Sour Cream Dip Florentine w/Winter Veggie Platter

Sour Cream Dip Florentine
 
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This fresh twist on the classic spinach dip is bursting with the flavors of green onions and dill.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Serves: 24
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (10 oz) frozen chopped spinach
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp dill
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup sour cream
Instructions
  1. Remove spinach from package, thaw and drain well.
  2. Put all ingredients in a blender, cover and blend on high until completely smooth.
  3. Cover and chill until serving time.
  4. Makes 2 cups.
Notes
Pictured here served with endive, purple asparagus, fingerling potatoes, cauliflower, blue lake green beans, and sugar snap peas.

Pesto Brie en Croute

Then there’s this Pesto Brie en Croute. I have my friend SarahJane to thank for this beaut. It’s crazy simple too–literally less than three minutes to assemble, I swear! Too, if pesto’s not your thing, skip it and top the brie with something else such as cranberry sauce or maybe fig preserves with chopped walnuts. The possibilities are endless. My pictures here don’t do it justice, but rest assured, it’ll disappear so fast, you better make two.

Pesto Brie en Croute

Pesto Brie en Croute
 
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Creamy brie topped with pesto and wrapped in buttery puff pastry--what could be better?
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: French
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1 frozen puff pastry sheet, thawed
  • 1 wheel brie
  • 3 tbsp pesto
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • egg wash (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Spread puff pastry sheet on a floured surface.
  3. Place brie wheel (with skin on) in center.
  4. Spread pesto on top of brie.
  5. Crush garlic into pesto.
  6. Pull corners of the puff pastry up over the brie and twist. Pinch and fold over corner edges.
  7. Brush with egg wash if desired.
  8. Bake until golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.

Bacon Cheese Toasts

Of course, I’ve saved the best for last–Bacon Cheese Toasts, or as we call them around here, the bacon-cheese things. You’re probably looking at this picture and thinking, seriously? Yes, seriously. If I ever failed to serve these at one of my parties, there would be a riot–I kid you not. This is one of my mom’s creations, so it’s been a family standard for as long as I can remember. I probably made more than six dozen last weekend, and I couldn’t crank them out fast enough. I recommend getting these babies prepped in advance so that all you need to do is pop them under the broiler when you’re ready to serve.

Bacon Cheese Toasts

Bacon Cheese Toasts
 
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Cocktail rye topped with bacon and cheese. Need I say more?
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizers
Cuisine: American
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 1 lb thick bacon, cut into thirds
  • 1 loaf cocktail rye or pumpernickel (pictured)
  • 1 package Kraft sharp cheddar singles
Instructions
  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Cook bacon about three quarters of the way through. Drain completely.
  3. Spread cocktail ryes in a single layer on a cookie sheet.
  4. Top each cocktail rye with a quarter slice of cheese.
  5. Top the cheese with a piece of bacon.
  6. Broil until golden and bubbly.
  7. Makes about 2 dozen.
Notes
You can make as many or as few of these as you want. Typically I get the 3lb package of thick bacon, which requires 2½ loaves of cocktail rye, and 2 packages of the cheese. No matter how many other appetizers you're serving, people manage to eat more than 3 each of these, so make plenty!

 

Here’s what the rest of the #SundaySupper crew cooked up for the party:

Holiday Cocktails

Holiday Appetizers or Hors d’oeuvres

In honor of the Sandy Hook victims and their families, we have cancelled our regularly scheduled #SundaySupper Chat this week.

Let this be a time when we renew our faith in the power of love and realize the importance of time with our families.

 

Note: I receive a modest commission from any purchases made through the Amazon.com links above.

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