Appetizers Recipes

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Roasted Pumpkin Filled Crepe Recipe (Beggar's Purse) Recipe

For my husband Lulu's birthday, the three of us took a few days off to visit Paris. My baby Aria is already having a blast, enjoying every bit of Parisian life so far. We arrived last Friday and have already had time to go to museums and wander through Parisian markets. We noticed that Halloween has become increasingly popular in France, and decorated pumpkins are available everywhere. Of course, pumpkins are just as much fun to eat as they are to draw on, so I picked one up and used it to make dinner.

To prepare this recipe I roasted a pumpkin, gathered the pulp and stuffed it into a crêpe. The filling also contains a little Saint Marcellin cheese and pine nuts. I love cooking with this ripe cheese; when warm, it has a robust mushroom-y, earthy flavor.

Give this recipe a try, and you’ll (almost) feel like you're in the City of Lights. I’ll take lots of pictures while I’m here and will share them on my Twitter and Facebook pages, so if you haven’t already, follow / like Pham Fatale for all the updates!

 


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Parmesan and Hearts of Palm Crostini Recipe

 

These hearts of palm appetizers are a recipe for success. Roasted red bell peppers meld with the sweet and mellow warmth of roasted heads of garlic in this hot dip that is used as the topping for these vegetarian appetizers. The main ingredients are baby spinach, hearts of palm and invigorating Serrano peppers.

Spread the dip on grilled bread, sprinkle with a little cheese and pass through the broiler for a few minutes; you'll have the most amazing crostini ever!

 


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Roasted Brussels Sprout Tart Recipe Recipe

The preparation of this roasted Brussels sprouts tart may seem a little tedious, but with a little organization, you'll be able to do it in a breeze. In the morning, I roasted the Brussels sprouts along with red onions and bell peppers. I blended them into a thick paste with fromage blanc and Asiago cheese. An hour before dinner, I pre-cooked the tart shells. When it was finally dinner time, I placed the filling and topped that tartlets with whole roasted Brussels sprouts I previously warmed up. 

If you serve a large vegetarian crowd, a simple salad filled with nuts (for added protein) will suffice to complete the meal. Otherwise, you could also accompany the savory tarts with chicken in creamy mustard sauce (that was the alternative choice for dinner). Bon appétit!


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Spinach Avocado Soup with Shrimp Chips Recipe

The idea for this little first course came from an attempt to introduce avocado to my 10-month old baby Aria. The cream soup consists of barley and toor lentils, avocado and spinach. It was so delicious, I thought I'd share the same dish with our dinner guests, with a few alterations, of course. I fancied up the recipe with fresh sautéed spicy crab and Vietnamese shrimp chips called bánh phồng tôm. The velvety texture of the soup against the tasty, cracker-like chips was heavenly.

I love the idea of sharing meals with my daughter, and I’ll share more of our personal favorites. I think I have a little foodie in the making!


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Smoked Duck and Fig Tartine Recipe Recipe

“Tartine” is just a fancy word for an open-faced sandwich, using a single slice of bread with several ingredients on top. Growing up, my favorite was a tartine au Nutella, which as the name implies is a slice of bread slathered with the famous hazelnut chocolate spread.

Tartines can of course be savory, and today’s recipe combines, some of my favorite and most decadent ingredients. Fresh figs and red onions from our garden, sinful brie cheese, smoked duck, homemade mayonnaise and pistachios are all irresistible in their own right, and when layered together over a toasted naan, turn any meal into an unforgettable memory. This tartine hits every note; it's sweet, smoky and extraordinarily succulent.

This may be too expensive to be worth serving at a large party. So if you plan to make these appetizers for a group, you might want to substitute another kind of meat in place of the smoked duck. 


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