Simple Snacks for Anytime Entertaining
Nov 07, 2017 07:23PM
● By Bill Misrasi
When it comes to entertaining, it’s not always about three-course meals or hours upon hours of preparation. Sometimes, the best hosts look toward simple snacks and small plates to please guests with an array of palates.
Herbs, onions, artichokes and olives create a medley of flavors atop this savory flatbread that makes it easy to give guests a fresh bite without spending too much time in the kitchen. Or you can enjoy a berry and beet chutney as a topping for crostini that is spread with goat or cream cheese, or topped with a thin slice of Gouda or a runny slice of Brie. It’s also a welcome addition to an open-face sandwich.
The secret is using convenient ingredients like Aunt Nellie’s Harvard Beets and Holland-Style Onions that contribute great flavors to recipes and also help streamline preparation as guests settle in for an evening of fun and relaxation.
Explore more ideas to make your entertaining skills shine at AuntNellies.com.
Herbed Mediterranean Flatbread
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10-12 minutes
- 1 jar (16 ounces) Aunt Nellie's Holland-Style Onions
- 1 jar (7 1/2 ounces) quartered, marinated artichoke hearts
- 1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped or sliced Kalamata olives
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- coarsely ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves, crushed
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 whole-grain round or square flatbreads (about 6-7 inches diameter)
- fresh basil (optional)
- Heat oven to 400° F. Drain onions. Pat dry. Discard liquid. Drain artichokes well. Discard liquid.
- Press onions with spatula to crush lightly. Pat dry again. Place in large bowl. Coarsely chop artichokes. Add to bowl with onions. Stir in bell pepper, parsley, olives, red pepper flakes, black pepper and 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese; set aside.
- In small bowl, stir together olive oil, thyme and garlic. Brush over one side of flatbreads. Place on baking sheet; bake 2 minutes. Remove from oven.
- Top each flatbread with onion mixture. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese. Return to oven. Bake 8-10 minutes, or until heated through and flatbread is crisp.
- Cut each flatbread in half. Sprinkle with fresh basil, if desired.
Beet and Berry Chutney
Prep time: 20 minutes
- 1/2 cup orange marmalade
- 1 jar (15 1/2 ounces) Aunt Nellie’s Harvard Beets, not drained
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped candied ginger (optional)
- 1 1/2 cups berries (fresh or frozen unsweetened cranberries, blueberries, raspberries or strawberries, cut in half or quartered, if large)
- In medium saucepan over medium heat, stir marmalade until melted. Stir in beets and red pepper. Cook 3-5 minutes until liquid is reduced by about half, stirring frequently. Add ginger, if desired.
- If using only cranberries, add to pan with beet mixture and cook until they just begin to pop. If also using other berries, add to beet-cranberry mixture; stir and heat through. If using only blueberries, raspberries or strawberries, add to beet mixture after reducing liquid. Stir and heat through.
- Remove pan from heat; cool to room temperature before serving.
Note: Chutney can also be served chilled. Store, covered, in a refrigerator up to 1 week.