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Pastry

Egg and Satsuma Puff Pastry Appetizers

These appetizers are really unusual, combining hard-boiled egg in garlic mayonnaise with mandarin segments, lettuce, and fresh snipped chives. You can use thawed pastry to make these but make sure it is still very cold, because if it gets too warm it will be sticky and harder to work with.

You can actually adapt the filling for these appetizers however you like. If you want to replace the egg with tuna mayonnaise or something else, that is fine. Swap the mandarin segments for halved strawberries if you prefer, or grapes, and you can also add some cheese to these appetizers. The pastry disks give you something to work with.

Just remember you will need some kind of moisture in there, else they will be too dry, which is why we are using a little vinaigrette (that also adds flavor) as well as the garlic mayonnaise. Continue reading

Vol-au-vents with a Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Filling

These wonderful little snacks are easy to make and the combination of chicken, mushrooms and white sauce gives these homemade vol-au-vents a great filling. You can either serve these hot, warm, or cold; they are great served at any temperature. If you want a glossy finish, you can brush egg on to them before baking. Chicken broth added to the pastry recipe adds extra flavor and will suit this vol-au-vent recipe, but that is optional.

Chicken and mushrooms are served together in many different recipes, both appetizer and entree recipes. You can combine chicken and mushrooms if you are making tartlets, soup, curry or another dish because the earthy mushroom flavor and the mild taste of the chicken are great partners. Use chicken breast, chicken thigh meat or any kind of chicken you have. If you happen to have leftovers just use those but pick them over first to remove any pieces of bone.

If you have the time and the inclination, you might want to try making your own pastry, rather than using store-bought. This recipe yields a pound of rough puff pastry, which tastes just like regular puff pastry but is easier to make. You will need fifteen minutes to make it and an hour chilling time. Whatever dough you do not use will keep well in the freezer, wrapped in plastic, for up to a month. You can halve this recipe if you prefer to make less. Continue reading

Amazing Artichoke Appetizer Tartlets

If you enjoy shrimp tartlets, mushroom tartlets or even sweet ones like pecan tartlets or lemon blueberry tartlets, why not try something a little different? The following recipe for artichoke tartlets combines ham, cheese, artichokes and more to make an unusual little snack. These artichoke tartlets are a great appetizer for a dinner party and they also make nice canapés.

Artichokes are one of those ingredients that people avoid buying because they appear difficult to prepare. Actually this is not true. There are different ways to prepare them and you can grill artichokes, fry them, or bake them. In the following artichoke tartlets recipe, the artichoke is fried to soften it and that is all the preparation you need.

Fontina is the best cheese to use in the following easy tartlets recipe but you can use any other sweet milk cheese you want. The butter, milk, and egg yolks work with the Fontina to give a rich, smooth, and creamy sauce for the tartlets, which is great with the artichokes. You can use readymade tartlet cases or vol-au-vent cases for these little treats. Choose whichever size and shape you happen to like best. You could even make your own pastry but, to be honest, store-bought pastry cases work just as well so you might as well use those and save yourself some time, especially if you have other canapés or appetizers to make as well as these creamy artichoke tartlets. Continue reading

Savory Shrimp Appetizers Recipes and Leek Tartlets

Tartlets are always a nice idea, especially if you are having guests over and you want to offer them something really tasty to enjoy with their first drink. They are also good at a buffet. These shrimp and leek tartlets are mouthwateringly good and they feature mushrooms, parsley and berries, as well as the shrimp and leek. The filling is a creamy sauce made with butter, flour, and milk.

You can also add some chopped fresh parsley to the filling if you want to. These tartlets are easy to make and you can either use puff pastry or readymade tartlet cases or vol-au-vent cases for them. These little snacks are best served hot and they smell amazing while they are in the oven. If it is easier for you, or if you have a lot to make, you can prepare the filling earlier in the day and simply keep it in the refrigerator in a covered container until you are ready to assemble the tartlets. Do not fill the tartlets more than half an hour before baking them or they might go soggy.

Shrimp goes well with all kinds of vegetables and leeks offer a similar flavor to onion but milder and slightly different, so it is a nice ingredient to include in these mushroom and shrimp pastries. If you prefer to use onion then of course you can; use about the same quantity so one onion can be substituted for your leek. Red onion would be tasty or sweet onion like Vidalia would good too. Continue reading