Luxurious Appetizers



BY LAUREN SEPHTON

Turn up the heat this holiday season by providing your guests with these three heavenly appetizers that will grab their attention, yet only take you minutes of actual work to prepare. You’ll have more time to spend with your family and friends, but still be able to enjoy the deliciousness of the holidays.

Brie & Cranberry Stuffed Mushrooms

Servings: 12

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

– 12 baby Portobello mushrooms

– 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

– 1/4 cup cranberry sauce

– 1/2 round brie

– 1/4 tsp. black pepper

– fresh thyme, for garnish (optional)

– walnuts, for garnish (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Prepare your baking pan by lining it with parchment paper.
  2. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and brush each mushroom cap with the extra virgin olive oil.
  3. Slice the brie into bite-sized pieces and place one piece into the center of each mushroom cap.
  4. Spoon a generous amount of the cranberry sauce on top of the brie. Sprinkle each with black pepper, as well.
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbling. Optional: Garnish with crushed walnut pieces and thyme leaves.

Ricotta & Honey-Roasted Butternut Squash Bruschetta

Servings: 15-17

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

– 1 baguette, sliced into 15-17 crostini

– 3/4 cup whole-milk ricotta

– 1/2 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and sliced into small bite-sized cubes

– 2 tsp. honey

– 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

– zest of 1/2 lemon

– 1/4 tsp. sea salt

– 1/4 tsp. black pepper

– 15 sage leaves (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425F.
  2. Evenly lay out the baguette slices on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with a little olive oil and toast until golden brown, about 5-6 minutes.
  3. In the meantime, toss together the extra virgin olive oil, honey, and butternut squash cubes. Evenly distribute them onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to bake until tender, about 25-30 minutes.
  4. In the meantime, whisk together the ricotta, lemon zest, sea salt, and black pepper.
  5. Generously spread an even amount of the ricotta mixture over each crostini. Then, add a generous scooping of the honey-roasted butternut squash.
  6. Optional: Cook the sage leaves in a cast-iron skillet for 1-2 minutes with a little olive oil until the edges begin to curl. Garnish each crostini with a sage leaf.

Garlic Parmesan Turkey Meatballs

Servings: 20 meatballs

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

For Turkey Meatballs:

– 1 lb. ground turkey

– 1/2 red onion, finely diced

– 1 large egg

– 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, shredded or grated

– 2 tbsp. fresh parsley, minced

– 3 garlic cloves, minced

– 1/2 tsp. salt

For Garlic Parmesan Sauce:

– 4 tbsp. olive oil

– 2 tbsp. flour

– 1 cup chicken broth

– 1 cup whole milk

– 1 tsp. garlic powder

– 1 tsp. black pepper

– 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded or grated

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a bowl, mix all of the turkey meatball ingredients together. Then, use a cookie scoop to get an even amount of meat for each meatball. Roll out about 20 meatballs.
  3. Heat up about 1 tsp. olive oil in a cast-iron pan (or another oven-safe pan) over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Evenly layer the meatballs into the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, until slightly brown and crispy.
  4. Transfer the pan into oven to bake for 12-16 minutes.
  5. In the meantime, begin the garlic parmesan sauce by heating up the olive oil in a pan over medium heat.
  6. Stir in the flour on low heat, then gradually add in the milk while whisking continuously.
  7. Add in the chicken broth and cook until the sauce begins to thicken.
  8. Finally, stir in the parmesan cheese, black pepper, and garlic powder.
  9. Pour the sauce over the cooked meatballs.
  10. Optional: Garnish with fresh parsley and grated parmesan.

Impress your guests with these three luxurious appetizers to keep the holiday season loaded with sweet and savory goodness.


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