Cranberry Cocktail Meatballs

By Request!


75 meatballs
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1 bottle chili sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice


Thaw meatballs if frozen.

In 2 to 3-quart pan, cook cranberry sauce, chili sauce, sugar and lemon juice over medium heat, stirring, until bubbling.  Add meatballs and stir to coat with sauce.  Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until meatballs are heated through.

Transfer to serving dish.  Offer with wooden picks.

Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Palmiers


6 sun-dried tomatoes, oil-packed, drained (oil reserved) and chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tablespoon reserved oil from sun-dried tomatoes
3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
7 ounces puff pastry
1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water


Preheat oven to 400.

For pesto, mix tomatoes, garlic, reserved oil, and 2 tablespoons Parmesan untill well combined.

Roll pastry to 6″ x 14″ rectangle.  Trim uneven edges with sharp knife.  Spread pesto evenly over pastry.  Roll up short ends tightly to meet in the middle of pastry.  Refrigerate until firm, 20 minutes.  Brush with beaten egg on all sides.  Cut across into 1/2-inch thick slices.  Place slices on a greased baking sheet.  Bake until crisp and golden, 10 minutes.  Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan when hot from oven.

Cool on wire rack.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

To make up to 3 days in advance, store in an airtight container at room temperature, then crisp in a preheated 400 oven for 3 minutes.

Alternatively, to make well in advance, freeze unbaked, then bake from frozen in a preheated 400 oven for 15 minutes.

White Bean Dip


1/4 cup soft bread crumbs
2 tablespoons dry white wine
19 ounces canned cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
2 teaspoons snipped fresh oregano or basil
toasted pita chips


Combine bread crumbs and wine in a small bowl; set aside.  Combine beans, almonds, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, ground red pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a food processor bowl.  Cover and process until almost smooth.  Add bread crumb mixture.  Cover and process until smooth.  Stir in snipped oregano or basil.  If desired, cover and refrigerate for 3 to 24 hours to blend flavors.

Serve with toasted pita chips.

Tequila and Lime Marinated Shrimp


3 T onion,  finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 lbs fresh shrimp, peeled and cleaned
1/4 cup  good quality tequila
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/8 tsp salt
2 T cilantro, chopped


Cook onion and garlic in olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat about 3 minutes or until tender.  Add shrimp and tequila; bring to a boil.  Boil gently, uncovered, 3-5 minutes or until shrimp turn pink, stirring occasionally.  Transfer shrimp mixture to a bowl.  Add lime juice, salt and cilantro.  Toss to mix.  Cover and refrigerate 2-24 hours, stirring occasionally.  Drain before serving.  Serves 10-12.

Whole Wheat Crostini with Dried Tomato Tapenade


1 7-ounce jar dried tomatoes (oil pack), drained (3/4 cup)
1/2 of an 8-ounce tub cream cheese
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 2-1/4-ounce can sliced ripe olives, drained
1 tablespoon dried basil
2 cloves garlic
1/3 cup water
2 whole wheat baguettes


For Dried Tomato Tapanade, place dried tomatoes, cream cheese, pine nuts, olives, basil, garlic, and the 1/3 cup water in a food processor bowl; process until almost smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Transfer to covered container. Cover and chill up to 1 week. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut baguettes into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Place slices in a single layer on baking sheets. Bake until lightly toasted, 5-7 minutes. When cool enough to handle, spread each slice with about 1 teaspoon Dried Tomato Tapanade. Makes about 60 servings.

Roasted Eggplant Rolls


2 medium Japanese eggplants or 1 medium eggplant (1 lb. total)
3 to 4 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. dried herb blend
2 to 3 T. olive paste or tapanade
1/3 to 1/2 cup finely crumbled feta cheese


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with nonstick foil or parchment paper; set aside. Trim ends off of eggplant. Cut each eggplant lengthwise into 6 to 8 slices, each about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick (a mandoline is best for this). If using 1 medium eggplant, cut each slice in half lengthwise. (You should have 12 to 16 slices total.) Arrange eggplant slices on prepared baking sheet. Lightly brush both sides of eggplant with oil (spray with olive oil cooking spray as an alternative). Lightly sprinkle tops of slices with the dried herb blend.

Roast eggplant slices about 20 minutes or until tender and starting to brown. Cool eggplant slices on pan on a wire rack until easy to handle. Spread a thin layer of olive paste atop each eggplant slice. Sprinkle cheese atop paste. Roll up eggplant slices, starting from a short end. Secure with wooden toothpicks or skewers. Makes 12 to 16 appetizers.

Coconut Shrimp on Romaine Leaves

Coconut Shrimp on Romaine LeavesIngredients

12 ounces fresh or frozen peeled and deveined shrimp
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1/4 cup unsalted, dry-roasted peanuts, chopped
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 T fish sauce
3 T fresh lime juice
1 T finely shredded fresh ginger
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1/4 tsp salt
30 small romaine leaves


For shrimp filling, thaw shrimp, if frozen. In a large saucepan bring 4 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon salt to boiling. Add shrimp and simmer 1 to 3 minutes or until opaque. Drain. Rinse under cold running water. Drain again. Coarsely chop shrimp (you should have about 1-1/2 cups). Cover and chill.

Spread coconut in a shallow baking pan. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 5 to 10 minutes or until golden brown, stirring once or twice. Remove from oven. Cool.

For sauce, in a small saucepan combine coconut milk, peanuts, brown sugar, and fish sauce. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, over medium heat about 8 minutes or until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally. Cool.

In a bowl combine chopped shrimp, toasted coconut, lime juice, ginger, jalapeno pepper, and salt. Stir in sauce. Cover and chill up to 4 hours.

Transfer shrimp mixture to a serving bowl. For each appetizer, place a spoonful of shrimp filling on a romaine leaf. Roll up. Makes about 30 appetizer servings.

Brie and Walnut Tarts


1 puff pastry sheet, thawed
1/3 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1 tbsp. packed brown sugar
1 tbsp. Dijon-style mustard
3/4 lb. Brie cheese, chilled, rind removed and cut into 36 pieces


Heat the oven to 400°F.

Unfold the pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface.  Roll the pastry sheet into a 14-inch square. Cut into 36 (2 1/4-inch) squares. Press the squares into 36 (1 3/4-inch) mini muffin-pan cups.

Stir the walnuts, brown sugar and mustard in a small bowl. Spoon about 1/4 teaspoon walnut mixture into each pastry cup. Top each with 1 piece cheese.

Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown. Let the pastries cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.