Amuse Bouche Recipes

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Beet Polenta Appetizer Recipe Recipe

Beet Polenta Appetizer Recipe

03.12.14 by Jackie

I love the flavor combination of beets and sage; I've used the same marriage of flavors in soups, pasta dishes and vinaigrettes on multiple occasions. This time, I made a variation of a polenta appetizer and flavored it with this particular pairing. 

The beets gave a regal color to the bite-size portions and I repeated the sage flavor in the cream topping. The corn nugget garnish was my "cherry on top" and was a reminder of the cornmeal used for the polenta. 

You’ve probably noticed over the years that our family hosts a large number of dinner parties. My favorite part is creating new appetizers because it really levels the playing field for me. First I come up with a flavor combination that I know works incredibly well as my basis, then turn it into a miniature, aesthetically pleasing, unique piece of art. You know the saying: you eat with your eyes first! 


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Mustard Deviled Quail Eggs with Smoked Salmon (Oeuf Mimosa Recipe) Recipe

Oeuf mimosa ("deviled egg" in English) is a first course (or appetizer) made of hard cooked eggs from which the egg yolks have been removed and mixed with mayonnaise and herbs and then filled back into the egg white.

Deviled eggs are a very common French bistro dish but instead of using large chicken eggs, I used quail eggs. There are simple rules on how to boil quail eggs. The freshness of the eggs is very important. Remove the eggs from the refrigerator 15 minutes prior to cooking to bring them back to room temperature, then cover them with cold salted water and add a hint of vinegar. Egg shells are porous and by salting the water, the eggs will already be seasoned; the vinegar helps the egg whites coagulate in case they break while boiling.

The eggs are usually dressed with anchovies rolled into a ring with a caper or olive on top. Today I wanted to glam them up though, so I served the deviled eggs with smoked salmon and dill. Our guests love the mini appetizers and so will you if you give this recipe a try!


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Cha Tom Recipe (Vietnamese Shrimp Cakes) Recipe

Chả tôm are lightly seasoned shrimp cakes. No tasteless fillers here; a sprinkling of tapioca starch, coriander, green onions, garlic and kaffir lime are the only ingredients added to supplement the flavor and texture of the shrimp. It is true Vietnamese comfort food.

These shrimp cakes make wonderful appetizers, but can also be served as an entrée. Just pair them with vermicelli (called bún chả tôm) and you'll have yourself a very traditional Vietnamese meal. You could also make mini sandwiches for a change of pace. I served them recently as appetizers for a dinner party with a plum dipping sauce. They will be delicious no matter how you choose to prepare them!


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Vegetarian Cheese Quesadilla Recipe

Vegetarian Cheese Quesadilla

10.16.09 by Jackie

Quesadillas are easy to make and fun to eat. We had relatives over for dinner tonight, so I made some quesadilla canapés as an appetizer. I prepared two fillings, one with shredded beef and a vegetarian option as well.

I wanted the vegetarian ones to have a chewy consistency, so I did not use vegetarian chorizo as I usually do when I make vegetarian Mexican dishes. I used shredded, fried tofu that I blended with harissa to add a little kick to the dish. Harissa is a spicy paste that is used as a condiment in Northern African cuisine. I think the grainy paste blended with the shredded tofu loosely resembles the texture of the meat version. I'll post the recipe for harissa tomorrow.

Vegetarian Cheese Quesadilla Recipe


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Camembert Stuffed Fig Puffs Recipe

Camembert Stuffed Fig Puffs

09.05.09 by Jackie

I went into the garden today and I noticed we had a huge crop of Black Mission figs. I think I gathered probably two full baskets. We had some last minute guests come over this afternoon, and I decided to put the figs I just picked to good use. Since they were coming over for tea, I thought that bite size appetizers would be in order. I stuffed the figs with camembert and some thyme from the garden. I then rested each fig on a bed of puff pastry and baked them in the oven. 

A lot of my cooking is my own improvisation. If you know what flavors combinations work well together, it's easy to come up with new recipes when you're in a pinch. Figs stuffed with camembert is a classic combination, and really, what doesn't puff pastry go with?

Unfortunately, I didn't have any ready-made puff pastry, so I had to make some myself. The result isn't as beautiful as Julia's from Mélanger, but it also didn't take six hours to make! I have to give a special shout out to Julia for taking the effort to make pâte feuilletée at home. 

I think our guests enjoyed the little bite-sized fig appetizers. You could make a similar dish with many other fruits, so experiment and have fun!

Fresh fig recipe with pictures


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