Fast and easy appetizers: One of my favorite things about holiday parties is the variety of foods you usually have to choose from. A table is laid out before you, with so many choices, you literally take a spoonful of everything, just so you can taste it all. Our brains know it may be a long time, before we get to taste some of these items again, so we make sure we get a bite of everything. So one of my favorite things to do on New Year’s Eve is to make a meal out of these seldom seen items. My family loves the variety and I don’t have to spend hours in the kitchen preparing it all. With everything from steamed shrimp to egg rolls and crostini with Prosciutto, everyone finds a favorite and starts their New Year off with a happy belly. We thought you might like some ‘off duty’ time in the kitchen too, so we’re sharing a few of our favorites. Enjoy, and let us know what your favorite fast and easy appetizer is.
Easy Egg Rolls
*This makes approximately 30 egg rolls, depending on how large you make them.
2- 1lb packages of WonTon wrappers, (bring to room temperature in sealed package)
1 lb ground pork (substitute tiny shrimp or anything you’d like)
1 Tbsp. Sesame oil
1-2 Tbsp Soy sauce
1 pkg pre-cut coleslaw greens
Ground Ginger (to taste)
Chinese 5 spice seasoning (Any brand)
Peanut oil for frying (or any oil you prefer)
small bowl of water & pastry brush (for sealing wonton wrapper)
Fry pork and drain, let cool. Add coleslaw greens, soy sauce, sesame oil and seasoning, to taste, and toss well.
Lay wrapper in front of you so it is diamond shaped. Place approximately 2 Tbsps of mixture in middle of wrapper and fold bottom end up (be gentle or they will tear), tucking it lightly under the meat mixture. Fold both sides in towards the middle. With pastry brush, (or fingers) gently wet the top corner before folding egg roll up the rest of the way. Place on a plate and cover with a damp paper towel until you are finished rolling egg rolls. (Unless you’re lucky enough to have someone helping you) Fry in deep fryer or 1/2 inch of oil for 4-6 minutes on each side until golden brown.
Simple Cheese ball
1-5 oz jar Kraft Old English cheese spread
1-5 oz jar Kraft Roka Blue Cheese Spread
1 8 oz package cream cheese
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1-2 green onions
1/2 c. finely chopped hard salami
1-2 c. crushed walnuts
Combine all ingredients in medium sized bowl, except walnuts and chill until firm. Remove from bowl, shape into ball and roll in crushed walnuts. Serve with crackers, veggies, pita chips, etc.
1-2 lbs shell-on shrimp, deveined
Old Bay or Crab Boil seasoning, to taste
2 Tbsp white vinegar
Rinse cold, thawed shrimp in colander and toss with crab boil or Old Bay seasoning. Let this sit while waiting for water to boil.
In steamer pot combine water and vinegar and bring to a boil. Add shrimp to steamer and cook until shrimp are pink and firm. Do not overcook or shrimp will be tough. Serve alone & let guests ‘peel and eat’ or remove shell and serve on top of crostini.
Crostini with Prosciutto and Steamed Shrimp
1 baguette sliced 1/4-1/2 inch thick
1-5 oz roll of goat cheese
1/2 c. olive oil
2 green onions, tops only, sliced
1 lb seasoned steamed shrimp, shell & tail removed
About 8 oz. prosciutto, chopped into small cubes & lightly browned
Salt & fresh ground pepper
Shredded Parmesan, for garnish
On a baking sheet, brush both sides of bread with olive oil. Lightly salt and pepper. Bake until almost golden brown, about 15 minutes, turning if necessary. Remove from oven, spread with goat cheese, top with shrimp, cubed prosciutto, green onion and Parmesan. Return to oven for 5 minutes and serve.