Showing posts with label appetizers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label appetizers. Show all posts

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Shrimp Ceviche...and Easter Sunday!


Hi everyone...in order to keep this staggering food blog of mine going, I must be honest with you, and mostly with myself; that I'm never gonna make the Top 9 on Foodbuzz!...Foodbuzz?...oh, how sad!...there is no more Foobuzz, so I don't have to worry about the Top 9!

Although we all remember how nice it was to be part of that 'fun' circle, meeting each other way back about 4 years ago, buzzing each others' posts...and actually even meet each other in person, at the Foodbuzz Festival events, in San Francisco! Great memories...but that's all in the past!


This post may seem out of place...or I'm out of touch; but this amazing and refreshing...all fresh veggies, and the most delicious fresh Florida shrimp marinated in fresh Florida lime juice, and the freshest chopped cilantro, also Florida product, like everything else fresh Florida grown products.
As for every holiday you may well know that not only in our immediate family do we celebrate both holidays...for Passover (no photo)...and Easter, but we always celebrate with our wonderful and best friends, who also celebrate both holidays!...so you see; we all get along, and still believe in one GOD!


I watched both the Ten Commandments movies...the Hollywood fancy version with Charleston Heston, and the most recent one on the UP channel, and the recent one was quite intriguing...realistic, and more accurate. Unlike in the old one where Charleston Heston came down from Mt. Sinai with totally white hair and beard; in the more recent one...he still had the brown hair and beard!
Also, with the Passover movie...I was very shocked to see the 1960's version of Jesus with a short straight hair...only covering his ears; and the 'blue eyes'...that was a shocker to me with the Middle Eastern Jew...could not understand the part at the Last Supper...only 8 disciples?...what happened to the other 4?...guess they didn't fit into the picture screen?...also I watched the Book of Ruth movie...that was another Hollywood glamorous festive movie...among some of the others. So, I spent an entire week of 'reconnecting' with the biblical people!

I feel bad for having to post these quick photos that I took...just didn't have a chance to take time to stage my photos; but I must admit that this shrimp ceviche...which I cam up with at the last hour of desperate attempt, to bring something to the Eastern celebration!
Maria's beautiful home...we started out with my Shrimp Ceviche...
A few of us started out early, as usual, it's always a 'feast' at holiday; Easter is one of the biggest holiday for Italians and it is such a joyous tradition!
Such a sweet and gracious lovely hostess...Maria


Nonno Sal, (Maria's husband...carving the lamb roast, which was specially purchased from an Italian meat market. It was perfectly done...medium, rare, to medium. Lamb is a very traditional Easter treat especially in Italy and Greece!
A typical festive Italian holiday table setting; can't leave out the kids' table!
Great company, fantastic foods, we are so blessed to have great friends who are like 'family' to us!
My daughter Lora's traditional Easter wreath that she makes every year! Isn't it gorgeous?...almost too pretty to eat!
Lora's Italian Ricotta Pie...so flaky and delicious with the ricotta, and chocolate chunks filling...yumm!
Thank you for all your good wishes; Hope all of you had a blessed and Happy Easter!
Shrimp Ceviche
recipe by; Elisabeth

2 cups grape, or cherry tomatoes diced
2 cups English seedless cucumbers diced
1 cup scallions sliced thin, including the green part
1/2 cup tomato juice
about 1 or 2 Serrano chili, sliced thin (optional)
juice of 2 limes
1/2 cup tomato juice
a handful of finely chopped scallion

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl, add sea salt and pepper to taste.

For the Shrimp ingredients
2 lbs of large shrimp peeled, deveined, and chopped
juice of 4 fresh limes

Marinate shrimp and lime juice for 30 minutes. Add shrimp to the ceviche, and serve with fresh tortilla chips.
Serves 12



Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Smoked Salmon on Toast Points

I already posted two "Wordless Wednesday' post...almost did a 'Silent Sunday', but I can't stay 'wordless'...and I can't stay 'silent'! It's been such a torment and grieving period for me; first, the 'denial', and second the 'shock and grief'. Never in my life have I witnessed a favorite pet, passing away, and I never want to experience that as long as I live. I really think that poor little Mush missed Prince so much since he's been gone for the past two years...she grieved for her 'best buddy' for over a year. A few months ago, I found out that she has 'heart murmur' and I have been giving her pills daily, but in the end she gave up.

Although, she has been a lot closer to me (meaning, that she wanted to sit on my lap and literally patting my hand to pet her, (so cute, which I did anyway)...I cancelled her last appointment to the vet, and I cannot forgive myself. The hardest part is; when I walk through the door...just like to 'poem says'...she is no longer there to greet me!
I always have fresh herbs on 'hand'...eggs, capers, cream cheese, and occasionally buy smoked Nova Salmon. Not cheap by all means, but oh, so good. The best way that I love it is to make little 'open faced' sandwiches, or on bagels. These cute little whole grain party breads are a perfect choice...better than cutting up bread for 'toast points'...I prefer making toasts out of the little party loaf, and you have the perfect little snack to enjoy...and healthy too!

I have not been eating dinners at all since Mushy died...just snacks in the middle of the day, skipping breakfast as well! (not a good idea, just have no appetite)

Now that I pulled out my dear departed Hungarian grandmother's hand crocheted doily from my 'secret' drawer; she made this lovely piece and more for me, years ago which I kept it in meticulous condition; I'm proudly displaying that, as well!
As for me, I can totally just eat appetizers, and skip dinner! I love the Spanish inspired Tapas, as well and have been checking them out to make something really inspiring. Of course, the Italian Antipasti is not too 'shabby'...love the small bites!


Smoked Salmon on Toast Points
slightly adapted from Williams- Sonoma

For the herbed cream cheese:

  • 4 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. chopped fresh chives
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh dill
  • 6 slices white or wheat sandwich bread, crusts removed, each cut into 4 triangles
  • I used whole grain party bread
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
  • 6 oz. smoked salmon, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup capers, finely chopped
  • 3 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and grated
  • Dill sprigs for garnish

To prepare the herbed cream cheese, in a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, lemon zest, lemon juice, chives and dill. Stir with a wooden spoon until well blended. Transfer to a serving bowl, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Preheat an oven to 350F.

Brush the bread on both sides with the melted butter. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet and transfer to the oven. Bake until the toast points are golden and slightly crispy, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely.

To assemble, spread the herbed cream cheese on the toast points and place 1/2 to 1 whole slice of salmon on top. Garnish with the onion, capers, hard-cooked eggs and dill sprigs. Arrange on a platter.

Alternatively, arrange the toast points and smoked salmon on platters. Place the herbed cream cheese, onion, capers, hard-cooked eggs and dill sprigs in separate serving bowls and let guests assemble their own hors d’oeuvres. Serves 8 to 10.


Thank you for all your kind and caring words of comfort, I appreciate each and every one of your kind comments. I do apologize for not visiting and commenting on your blogs for almost 1 week now. I am getting back to the normal routine, and will not abandon my blog, or my favorite blogger friends! Your friendship means a lot to me, and I hope to stay in touch with you for a long time to come! Hugs,
Elisabeth

Friday, January 31, 2014

Chocolate Fudge Brownies... with Chocolate Ganache Frosting


Just when everyone in the U.S. is getting ready for Super Bowl Sunday...just who thinks about desserts?...well, I do know it's mostly chicken wings, sliders, pizza, chips, and dips that are the most popular party snacks for the big game, but who thinks about yummy, and easy to grab desserts?
We all love brownies...especially Fudge Brownies; and why not top it off with the most delicious
ooey-gooey Chocolate Ganache Frosting?...who says you can't have your cake...and 'eat it too?'...well, you sure can, with the cutest cupcake liners from William Sonoma! The recipe is super easy; got it from the Internet, and even if I didn't, I have it somewhere in one of my cookbooks, or recipe files. So much easier just one click to Google, and get what you need without searching in your own files!
So easy to serve these yummy fudge brownies... once they are done, and frosted, all you have to do is to cut the usual square portions in half, and set them in cute cupcake liners. Just be sure to refrigerate them until serving time, and take them out about 30 minutes before serving, and you will see how the fudge frosting will 'glisten' and achieve the ooey-gooey look! Every 'chocolate lovers' dream!


Chocolate Fudge Brownies
source: King Arthur Flour
1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan
2) Crack the 4 eggs into a bowl, and beat them with the cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder, and vanilla till smooth.
3) In a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl, or in a saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Or simply combine the butter and sugar, and heat, stirring, until the butter is melted. Continue to heat (or microwave) briefly, just until the mixture is hot (about 110°F to 120°F), but not bubbling; it'll become shiny looking as you stir it. Heating the mixture to this point will dissolve more of the sugar, which will yield a shiny top crust on your brownies.
4) Add the hot butter/sugar mixture to the egg/cocoa mixture, stirring until smooth.
5) Add the flour and chips, again stirring until smooth. Note: If you want the chips to remain intact in the baked brownies, rather than melting in, let the batter cool in the bowl for about 20 minutes before stirring in the chips.
6) Spoon the batter into a lightly greased 9" x 13" pan.
7) Bake the brownies for about 30 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, or with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it. The brownies should feel set on the edges, and the center should look very moist, but not uncooked. Remove them from the oven and cool on a rack before cutting and serving.

Nutrition information

Serving Size: 1 brownie (63g) Servings Per Batch: 24 Amount Per Serving: Calories: 260 Calories

    For the Ganach Frosting:Basic Chocolate Ganache
    • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
    • 1 cup heavy cream
    • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
    INSTRUCTIONS
    1. Place chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl; set aside.
    2. Place cream in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Pour over chocolate and let stand until chocolate has softened, about 5 minutes.
    3. Add butter and stir until smooth. Let cool slightly before using.
     
      Have a wonderful SUPER BOWL SUNDAY!
      eat plenty...drink responsibly! xo
 

Friday, December 20, 2013

Hot Pepper Jelly




So, this is my awesome 'Hot Pepper Jelly' that I have never made before! As you notice those pretty swatches of holiday material...I would have loved to place around the jelly jar top...unfortunately; they were a little small, except for the one jar on the top, but they were extremely slippery for me to try to tie them around the jars, so I left them as 'it is' a little 'place mat'...or a small cocktail napkin, if your prefer, but the jelly turned out so awesome and just the right peppery taste!

My granddaughter Gabby was not impressed...to say the 'least! She was expecting a mild light sweet pepper jelly, which I should have known from the start to make them with all sweet peppers...instead of mostly hot peppers add to some of the sweet. No problem...next time I will use all sweet peppers. At least...we, adults, get to enjoys these lovely gems, slathered over cream cheese topped little crackers...yummm!
It's so easy to make it, just follow the instructions on the recipe.

These are the peppers I used...purchase from the Green Market...the long red ones are the super hot pepper, and all the others are sweet!
KRAFT SURE JELL...Hot Pepper Jelly recipe... 

and I only used red, and orange peppers. The red ones were the hot peppers!
I washed, peeled, and chopped my peppers, and
put them in the food processor to chop them fine.
(be sure to remove the seeds first if you don't want them to be extremely hot)






Bring it to a boil, and skim off the foam...you are ready to ladle them into sterilized jars!










Aren't they so festive...red, and so pretty?
Well, you're not quite finished yet!














Cover the jar with the sterilized lids, and put them into water that covers them almost, to the top.













Cover the pot with a lid, and boil for 10 minutes.
Carefully remove the jars, and let it sit on a kitchen towel on the kitchen counter until it cools down...and your are ready to refrigerate them.









They are so good, served on Ritz crackers, with a dab of Philadelphia cream cheese and a small spoonful of the pepper jelly on top of the cream cheese...yumm! A perfect holiday treat!