Elegant Herb Appetizers
Elegant Herb Appetizers
Designed by Brenda Hyde
All Rights Reserved
I have found that a touch of herbs add elegance and make my guests
feel special, as if I went the extra mile to entertain them. I am amazed
that something so simple can make people feel so special in my home.
If you don't grow your own herbs, you can usually find them in the produce
section of your grocery store or the farmer's market. Be sure to rinse them
well and pat dry before using, and buy organically grown herbs if at all
possible. You will find you can spruce up any appetizer with a small amount
of chopped herb!
12 pieces crusty Italian Bread, 1 inch thick
1/3 to 1/2 cup olive oil
2 large, ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
24-36 basil leaves, torn into small pieces
12 garlic cloves, peeled, and cut in half lengthwise
salt and pepper
Toast bread over a grill or a very hot oven of 425 degrees. Brown on both sides. Remove and brush with oil. In a bowl combine tomatoes, oregano and basil. Place cloves in separate bowl. Serve bread warm and rub clove on bread, top with mixture and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
I also sprinkle and with parmesan cheese and put under the broiler for just a minute to heat top.
3 cloves garlic; finely chopped
2 cups parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon mixed herbs; basil, thyme, sage, oregano
4 tablespoons oil
juice of 1 or 2 lemons
1-2 teaspoons sugar
Blend herbs, garlic and salt in processor or blender until they form paste. Add the oil, a spoonful at a time, and mix well. Add the lemon juice, and season with sugar, pepper and more salt to taste. This is great with fish and also hard-boiled eggs! Try it on toasted French bread too.
Cheese and Herb SpreadIngredients:
2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese
4 ounces soft goat cheese
1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro, chopped fine
1 two inch long jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 tsp. minced garlic
3/4 tsp. each cumin and paprika
Garnish: thyme or parsley
Mix all items except garnish in a large bowl until blended. Place in decorative bowl. Cover with plastic wrap for at least 24 hours. Up to three hours before serving tuck in herb sprigs. Serve with baby carrots,green pepper, and crackers.
Herbed Cheese PalmiersIngredients:
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed as directed
1 egg, beaten with a fork
1 package (5.2 ounces) garlic and herb cheese spread
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil or 1 tsp. dry
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Have cookie sheet ready. Unfold pastry on a lightly floured surface, and brush lightly with the egg. Spread evenly with the cheese spread and sprinkle with herbs. Fold two sides about 1 1/2 inches toward the middle. Repeat folds. Fold in half lengthwise. Press gently. Cut crosswise in 1/2 inch thick slices. Place cut side down on ungreased cookie sheet. Lightly brush tops with egg. Bake 12-15 minutes until puffed and golden. Serve warm or at room temperature. Makes 20.
1/2 cup sour cream-regular or no fat
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 scallions, cut in chunks (or green onions)
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 can (14 ounces) artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
1/2 tsp. dried oregano, or 1 tsp. fresh
Process sour cream, cheese, scallions and garlic in food processor or blender until blended. Add artichokes and oregano, then process until finely chopped. Makes 1 3/4 cups.
Grilled Pita BreadsIngredients:
4 pita breads
2 tsp. fresh rosemary
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup coarsely crumbled feta cheese
2/3 cup coarsely chopped mushrooms
1 tablespoons fresh oregano
Place a large piece of foil on the grill rack. Crush the rosemary in the oil. Place pitas on foil, brush liberally with the rosemary oil, and top with cheese, mushrooms and oregano. Grill on low heat with the cover down until cheese melts. Cut into sections, as you would for pizza.