Amuse Bouche Recipes

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Olive Phyllo Cup Appetizer Recipe Recipe

Delicious food doesn't have to be heavy or rich in calories. Selecting ingredients wisely is the key to making these flavorful phyllo cup appetizers. Instead of using calorie-packed mascarpone cheese, I strained plain yogurt and combined the thick mixture with green and kalamata olives, roasted red bell peppers, garlic, lemon, curly parsley and extra-virgin olive oil. I also added tuna and an anchovy filet for extra brininess (you could omit them for a veggie version). The warm pan-seared Nabulsi cheese helped tie together the Mediterranean flavors of these fancy bites.

My philosophy is if you have to sacrifice flavor by using low-fat products, then don't eat it. I'd rather eat in small portions or not eat at all. Of course, eating the way we eat in our home means having to stay active all day. Juggling between my everyday tasks and my wonderful 21-month-old daughter gives me plenty of occasions to spend these calories. 

baby
21-month-old Aria going grocery shopping


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Fig and Goat Cheese Phyllo Cup Recipe Recipe

This is a very easy appetizer recipe. All you need is phyllo dough, fresh figs, dried figs, goat cheese and a bit of sugar. I "bruléed" the fresh figs to add another dimension of flavor and served them in the cute phyllo cups. 

It feels like the end of the summer already; figs are already peaking and I'm anxious to cook with what's ready to ripen on our trees. I'm so excited and I can't wait!


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Gougere Recipe (Savory Cream Puff Appetizers) Recipe

Gougères are savory choux pastry (pâte à choux salé in French) appetizers made with cheese. For this version, I made a light pastry dough with Parmesan and Triple Cream cheeses, baked them to form hollow puffed balls and filled them with pistachio pesto flavored cream cheese, mushrooms and red bell peppers.

We hosted a dinner party this evening and these cute little bites were perfect finger foods. Next time you host a cocktail party or buffet, you might want to prepare savory cream puffs. They can be prepared in advance and assembled at the last minute. Enjoy!

Savory Cream Puffs Recipe with Picture


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Grilled Portobello Mushrooms in Phyllo Cups Recipe

The basics of these appetizers are grilled Portobello mushrooms mixed with caramelized shallots. I added the mixture to layers of phyllo dough squares molded in a muffin pan and sealed with a piece of Reblochon cheese. I then topped the appetizers with a mound of herbed cream cheese and a little  sprinkle of Gruyère cheese. A quick turn in the oven and the phyllo cups came out crisp, golden and absolutely gorgeous.

Even though we have all sorts of gadgets in our kitchen, I'm not a fan of "uni-taskers" because they generally become a waste of space. I spent Labor Day de-cluttering our cupboards, pantry and garage, removing any unnecessary items. I found many different-sized muffin pans, but contrary to what you might think, they are excellent "multi-taskers". For this recipe, I used a 12-cup tinplate. The cavities of the pan form cups, which are ideal for individual servings. I’ve also used muffin pans to make parmesan cups, popovers and many other appetizers, as well as muffins, of course!

Mushroom Appetizers Recipe with Picture


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