Whether you’re hosting or attending an event, it’s always a great idea to have a delicious appetizer recipe stowed away in your back pocket, and it’s even better when you can make that recipe hours ahead of the event, leaving you plenty of time to prepare. Well, with this collection of “Make-Ahead” Appetizers from Martha Stewart, you’ll be quite prepared and celebrated for your next event.
A well-prepared artichoke dip is never underappreciated or under-valued at a social function.
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- ½ medium-sized yellow onions (diced small)
- 3 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
- 3 14 oz. cans of whole artichoke hearts (drained and coarsely chopped)
- ⅓ cup dry white wine
- 4 oz. of room-temperature Neufchatel cream cheese
- 2 ¼ cups Fontina Cheese (¾ lbs, cubed)
- ¼ cup of fresh parsley (chopped)
- 8 pitas, each cut into 6 wedges
- Preheat your oven to 400°F. Then, heat 1 tbsp of oil in a large skillet that is set to medium heat. Once heated, add your chopped onion and cook it until it’s softened. After about 5 minutes, add garlic and cook until it’s fragrant. After approximately 1 minute, add the artichokes and wine, and cook it all until the liquid evaporates, totaling about 8 minutes.
- Remove your skillet from the heat and stir in the cream cheese until it’s all blended, then fold in 1 ¼ cups of Fontina cheese and parsley.
- Afterward, transfer the mixture to a 2 qt. baking dish and sprinkle 1 additional cup of Fontina on top. Place the dish in the oven, baking it until it’s golden and bubbling, which will be about 30 minutes.
- While the dish is baking, toss your pita with 1 tablespoon oil and spread the pitas out on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until it’s golden and crisp. This is usually about 15 to 20 minutes. Serve your dip alongside warm pita chips.
This light, fish-filled salad that is packed with flavor, protein, and color always surprises guests with how wonderful it tastes.
Ingredients for Appetizer:
- 1 tsp lemon zest (finely grated)
- ½ cup fresh lemon juice (from 3 lemons), saving lemons for serving
- ½ tsp sugar and 6 tbsp (separated)
- Kosher Salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- ½ tsp finely-minced garlic (1 clove)
- ¾ cup of fresh, finely-chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 1 cup whole parsley leaves
- 1 lb. small squid, cleaned (bodies cut into ½ inch-thick rings and tentacles halved)
- 1 lb. large shrimp (peeled & deveined)
- 1 lb. mussels (cleaned)
- In a large bowl, whisk together your lemon zest, salt, pepper, sugar, and garlic. After it’s combined, whisk in your oil and chopped parsley. While you’re mixing these, bring 4 qt of water to a boil, after having put 6 tbsp sugar and ¼ cup of salt in the pot.
- Once the water is at a rolling boil, add the squid, and blanche for 30 seconds until it is slightly tender. Then, transfer the squid to an ice bath with a slotted spoon to stop its cooking. Once it’s cool. Drain the squid of water, place it on a paper towel to dry, and transfer it to the bowl of dressing.
- Return your pot of water to a boil, add your shrimp, stir it once, cover it, and remove it from the heat. After letting it stand for three minutes, use your slotted spoon to remove the shrimp and place the pieces onto a plate to cool slightly. Pat dry, and place in the dressing with the squid.
- Return the pot to a boil and add the mussels. Then, lower the temperature to medium heat, cover it, and simmer until the mussels open (approximately 3 to 5 minutes). Drain the pot, transfer the opened mussels to a plate, allowing them to cool, and remove all but 10 from their shells and add them to a bowl with the rest of the seafood. Reserve the remaining mussels left in their shells for serving.
- Then, it’s time to toss your seafood and dressing together with the fennel, bell pepper, celery, crab, and parsley leaves. Toss thoroughly, seasoning with salt and pepper and either store it (up to 8 hours) or serve immediately with reserved mussels and lemon wedges.
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