Thanksgiving is a week from today, and even if you’re not the one in charge of hosting family and friends, you’ll likely be asked to bring a menu contribution along to wherever you’ve been invited. Volunteer to bring an appetizer, that’s what I always do, and it’s never too early to start planning. Here are three suggestions that don’t require last minute oven space, which is key, since most ovens will be occupied by a turkey throughout cocktail & appetizer hour. All three of these suggestions are veggie based and not too heavy, as to leave room for seconds on stuffing and pie. Priorities, right?
Giada’s Pea Pesto Crostini are sooooooo delicious, you’ll never believe the main ingredient is thawed frozen peas. I promise, you won’t. I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t love these, including my DamKids. Pick up some sale frozen C & W Peas when you’re at Sendik’s this week, along with some good Parmesan, and bagged toasts if you don’t care to cut and toast your own baguette. There’s no shame in purchased toasts.
Another starter I love is Alton Brown’s Hot Spinach & Artichoke Dip … it’s microwaved! (What?) Yes, microwaved. And really yummy. I was surprised at how good it was when I first made it last fall. Super easy and you’ll like it, too. Best of all, you can buy all the goods this week when they’re on sale, so look for Reese Quartered Artichoke Hearts, Philadelphia Brand Cream Cheese, Hellman’s Mayonnaise, and Dare Breton Crackers.
Lastly, here’s one I can make with my eyes closed: Asparagus with Wasabi Mayonnaise Dip. It’s fresh and light and you can easily swap in other veggie options (blanched broccoli or snap peas, for instance) if you’re not in to asparagus. If you have mayonnaise, soy sauce, and sugar on hand, you’ve already got half the ingredients required to pull this one together.
My plan is to serve one or two of these appetizers alongside a pretty cheese board on Thanksgiving afternoon. If you’re stuck for cheese suggestions (happens to me all the time), just ask the helpful people in any Sendik’s cheese department — they are full up of good ideas and can help you mix and match the perfect tray. Happy planning! : )Fresh, Frugal, Fabulous, News | November 15th, 2012