One Hour Appetizers

Posted: Dec 15 2015 | Author: Marielle T

Find yourself rushing from event to event over the next couple of weeks? You're not alone! It's an awesome feeling to squeeze in time with all your friends, but it gets stressful if you're expected to bring a tasty snack along with you each time.
Working within the time crunch, our LUX blogger Marielle shares with us some quick and drool-worthy recipes that will be the hit of every party you attend.
 
 
   
The colder the temperature drops the more I itch to spend the day locked in the warmth of my kitchen, which consequently is how I spend most of my free time in December. December is the month I labour over recipes that I normally find too time consuming and daunting. Meyer lemon squares, nanaimo bars, (and if you recall from last year) citrus dipped gingerbread men, are suddenly no match for me and a fresh pot of coffee. There's something so soothing about working with your hands and making something from scratch as the snow falls silently outside. Just add a Christmas album and I'm basically in heaven. 

Yet this year I've found myself a step behind. It's mid-December and I haven't even started Holiday baking. I feel out of sorts, rushed and anxious about the upcoming parties I have over the next two weeks with nothing sitting in my fridge ready to bring. And so this week I spent a day mastering the art of the quick appetizer.

These three recipes are perfect for last minute Holiday gatherings. They're no-mess, crowd-pleasing, elegant appetizers that are on trend. Best of all, I was able to stock up on everything I need in just two stops (check out The Italian Center and Evoolution on 104 st for all the ingredients used in this post) and whip up all three appetizers in under an hour and a half. You don't need to be Martha Stewart to know that's a good thing! 
 
  
Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts 



   
  
Ingredients
  

1 pd of assorted whole nuts
1 egg white 
2 tsp of vanilla extract
2 tsp of maple syrup
2 tsp of water 
1 cup of sugar
1 1/2 tbsp of cinnamon 
1 pinch of cloves, salt, paprika, and cayenne pepper 

 
 The Simple Steps

*** Preheat oven to 250 F

1. Whisk the egg white until it's white and frothy then stir in vanilla extract, maple syrup and water. 

2. Toss the nuts in the egg white solution until they're well coated. 
3. Mix sugar, cinnamon and spices all together in a large ziploc bag. 
4. Pour the egg-white washed nuts into the spiced sugar and shake until they're well coated. 
5. Lightly coat a pan in vegetable oil and spread the sugared nuts onto the pan. 
6. Cook for 1 hour, turning every 20 minutes. 
7. Let the nuts cool on the pan before moving them into an airtight container and enjoying! 
 

 
 
Caprese Salad Skewers


  

  
 Ingredients  

2 cups of spinach
1 cup of basil 
1 package of medium sized bocconcini
1 package of tiny heirloom tomatoes 
2 tbsp Black Mission fig balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp Frantoio extra virgin olive oil 

 
The Simple Steps

1. Thickly slice bocconcini and set aside. 
2. Alternate between skewing heirloom tomatoes, bocconcini slices and spinach and basil.
3. Lightly drizzle all the skewers with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and serve! 

 
 
 A Mid-Winter Charcuterie Board 
 
 

 
  
Ingredients  

3-4 assorted meats (we used genoa salami, parma prosciutto, and spicy capicollo)  
3-4 assorted cheeses (be sure to use variety of soft and firm cheeses)
2-3 sauces or spreads
artisan crackers
fresh bread
assorted pickled items (we love Mojo Jojo's for a delicious locally made option)
assorted dried fruit and nuts

 
Tips & Tricks to Making a Pintrest-Worthy Charcuterie Board 

1. Use a variety of pickled items to give color and acidity to your board. 
2. If you have a few minutes before you serve the board, slice the fresh bread, broil in the oven for 2-3 minutes and drizzle with olive oil. 
3. Mustard is a classic on a charcuterie board but mix it up and use a fruit preserve as well (we used fig and black pepper spread on ours).
4. Let the board stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving to ensure both the meat and cheese are flavourful.