Monday, November 8, 2010

Seventeen Days and Counting

    Thanksgiving is just 17 days away. For most Americans, Turkey Day is the beginning of a marathon of family, friends, football, and of course food.... and the average weight gain of 7 - 12 pounds( Ugh!
    Well, I'd like to help you be the best Dinner Guest by giving you some great, easy appetizer recipes that you can take to any gathering... and they are also friendly on your waist!

Vegetable Pate                                                                                
1-1/2 lb Fresh Green Beans
2 Hard Boiled Eggs
3 Onions
1 clove Garlic
1/2 c Roasted Almonds
1 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 pinch Salt and Pepper

1- Steam Green Beans
2- Brown the Onions and Garlic in Olive Oil
3- Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth
4- Serve with fresh vegetables and/or crackers

Baked Brie                                                                                     
1/3 c    Dried Cranberries
1/3 c    Frozen Peaches, chopped and thawed
1/4 c    Sliced Almonds
1/4 c    Honey
1 tsp    Chopped Fresh Thyme
1 sht    Frozen Puff Pastry, thawed
1         8-ounce Wheel of Brie
1         Egg White

1- Preheat oven to 400°F.
2- Combine Cranberries, Peaches, Almonds, Honey, and Thyme
3- Roll Puff Pastry to 12-inch square. Trim top rind off Brie and center cheese on pastry. Top with fruit mixture.
4- Beat egg white in a small bowl and brush some egg wash along pastry edges. Gather dough up around Brie, twisting into a topknot. Chill in freezer for 15 minutes.
5- Brush pastry with egg wash and place on a parchment-lined baking pan. Bake for 35 minutes.
Stuffed Apricots
1 package Whole Pitted Dried Apricots
1/2 c cubed Asiago Cheese
8-10 slices bacon, cut into thirds

1- Stuff apricots with a piece of the cheese.
2- Wrap one piece of the Bacon around each stuffed Apricot and secure with a toothpick.
3- Place on broiler pan with a rack.
4- Broil bacon wrapped apricots 4-6" from the heat source for 9-12 minutes, turning twice during cooking time, until crisp.
5- Let stand for 5 minutes, then serve.

Fig and Proscutto Crostata                                                                                            
4 oz       Dried Figs
1/4 c      Lemon Juice
1 Tbs     Fresh Thyme Leaves
2 cloves Garlic
1/2 tsp   Sea Salt
1            Pie Dough
4 oz       Goat Cheese, softened
2 oz       Prosciutto, cut into 1/2 inch strips
1            Egg White

1- Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F.
2- Place the Figs, Lemon Juice, Thyme, Garlic, and Salt in a food processor and process until smooth. Set aside.
3- Roll the Dough into a 13-inch circle on a lightly floured surface.
4- Transfer the Dough to a baking sheet and gently spread the Goat Cheese onto the Dough, leaving a 3/4-inch-wide border around the edge.
5- Spread the Fig mixture over the Goat Cheese and fold the border edge over the fig mixture to form a 12-inch crostata.
6- Top with the Prosciutto and lightly brush the edge of the Dough with the Egg White.
7- Bake until golden -- about 15 minutes.
8- Cool on the sheet for 10 minutes.

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