This week’s TBT cookbook is a gem from 2008: New Flavors for Appetizers. Subtitled Classic Recipes Redefined, this tome is a very handy sidekick year-round. And particularly as we the enter holiday season.
For a party or major holiday meal, we often focus on that main course, on the dessert, or — better — the desserts. Oops, the appetizers! Oh God, I forgot the appetizers. And I can’t serve the same cheese and crackers as last year. Another party with smoked salmon on crackers? No, I want different.
Okay. Make Buckwheat Blinis, add lox, and anoint with Horseradish Cream. Yes, a classic appetizer but not redefined. Actually, quite improved recipes. Look at the book cover and those blinis sit there ready to be gulped down. Perhaps, with the delights in this book, you won’t need a main course at all.
You will still, of course, still need dessert. Or desserts.
Author Amy Sherman offers her ideas arranged by the season. For Fall, she invites you to try, among other ideas, these temptations:
Mushroom Tartlets with Cornmeal Crust
Dates Stuffed with Chorizo and Goat Cheese
Curried Butternut squash Samosa with Tamarind Chutney
Oysters on the Half Shell with Apple-Horseradish Slaw
Sweet Potato Cakes with Smoked Trough and Herbed Crème Fraiche
And with Winter to come and even more parties to prepare for, you might consider:
Crab-Stuffed Piquillo Peppers
Lobster, Avocado and Grapefruit Cocktail
Crostini with White Beans, Garlic, and Tuscan Kale
This book, again from 2008, was well ahead of its time. I don’t remember books then talking about piquillo peppers, let alone crab-stuffed ones. And kale was something that in 2008 I could not find in my local market.
The ideas here are often not revolutionary. They are exactly what Amy tells us: redefinitions and refinement of classics. The book is a superior collection of ideas to give your party distinction. Most happily, the ideas here are relatively simple to prepare. If you want to give your guests a spread of several sumptuous tidbits, then New Flavors for Appetizers is all you need.