October 22, 2014

Everyday Gourmet

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Make Easy Memories

Nov. 18, 2010

By Kim Dannies

One of the best things about the Thanksgiving holiday is gathering family and friends to help out in the kitchen. Food is the point of this holiday, and with so many cooking tasks it’s nice to spread the work around. Hors d’oeuvres play a major role, too, as families tend to arrive early for games, hikes and football, and visiting makes people hungry. These snacks are great because they are simple enough for children or cook-shy folks to help out with, but so delicious they could easily become holiday classics.

Smoked Salmon Chips

By Carol Conard

You’ll need: 9-ounce bag of Kettle Brand Krinkle-Cut Salt & Fresh Ground Pepper Potato Chips, 6 ounces smoked salmon, 1/2 cup crème fraiche, fresh dill, capers. (Healthy option: substitute English cucumber slices for the chips.)

Arrange chips on a sliver platter. Fold small amounts of the salmon onto each chip. Dollop each chip with some crème fraiche, top with a few capers and a wisp of fresh dill. (Do ahead: 1 hour.)

Rosemary Roasted Cashews

By Ina Garten (‘Barefoot in Paris’)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place 1 1/4 pounds of cashew nuts on an ungreased baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes, until they are warmed through. Meanwhile, combine 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary leaves, 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar, 2 teaspoons kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1 tablespoon melted butter. Toss the warm nuts with the rosemary mixture until the nuts are completely coated. Serve warm or cool.

Bleu Cheese Grapes

Wash 1 pound of red seedless grapes; allow them to dry thoroughly. Toast 1 cup pistachio nuts or walnuts for 3 minutes. Cool. Pour nuts into a plastic, quart-sized zip-lock bag and crush the nuts with a rolling pin. Pour nuts onto a plate.

Using a fork, mix together 1/2 pound blue cheese (or goat cheese) and 1/2 pound cream cheese, adding a bit of milk to create a creamy-paste consistency. Coat each grape with the cheese mixture; then roll the grape in the nuts to coat. Arrange on a platter. (Do-ahead: 6 hours.)

Kim Dannies is a graduate of La Varenne Cooking School in France. She lives in Williston with her husband, Jeff; they have three 20-something daughters who come and go. For archived Everyday Gourmet columns go to kimdannies.com.

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