Appetizer Christmas Tree

This is not much of a dinner recipe. But it is a great party idea that I saw here. I didn’t like the idea of Styrofoam, so I made a cone from aluminum foil and wrapped puff pastry around it to create an edible form.

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It is quite sturdy after being left overnight, I did have worries about it bearing the weight of a full load so I left the foil in it.

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We are throwing caution to the wind and just nibbling without regard for calories, hoping that we now know when we have had enough. This was a trial run for something during the holiday season when we might need finger food. I used black olives, cocktail onions, reduced fat Colby-Jack, light string cheese, Aidell’s apple chicken mini sausages, grape tomatoes, petite dills, and some thawed frozen broccoli. We might even whip up some sugar-free mock-tails.

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Bubble and Squeak & Samosas

I had half of a head of cabbage left from the cabbage rolls I made and I also had a packet of just-add-water loaded mashed potatoes (unused on camping trip) so I decided to make this tonight. I’ve had it in a restaurant and I’ve bought it frozen in the grocery store but I have never made it. This recipe looks amazing. I skipped the goose fat and bacon and just used 1 tablespoon of bacon grease, 1/2 onion, the cabbage and the made up potatoes. It smells so good!

Now for the Samosas. I decided to try this recipe and I wasn’t disappointed. I replaced the potatoes with carrots and left out the Chinese spice but the taste was so good! And I don’t care if this meal isn’t a perfect pairing, it is a comfort food definition. The B&S doesn’t look delicious but it is.

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Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

I found this recipe for the pickiest eater I know. She loves hot wings. I can’t recall if she liked them but I thought they were awfully easy to make. In the comments it was suggested to add parmesan cheese. I think I will try that idea. I used 580 grams of chicken breast, no parsley, red onion, and canola oil. I got 24 meatballs and they took 10 minutes to bake. I used canola oil in the sauce and added 1/8 teaspoon butter extract to give it flavor. I skipped the blue cheese sauce and used Ranch and fat-free ranch dressing. I am using celery sticks as cocktail forks to serve these and on the side, I made Andrea’s Roasted Cauliflower recipe.

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The Tea Party

Late this afternoon, I got a text from one of the young invitees expecting cucumber sandwiches. So, I had to add one more dish. The trick to these sandwiches is to slice the cucumber very thinly, pat them dry with paper towels and layer them onto buttered bread. The crusts must be removed as well.

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One more item on the menu was stuffed mushroom caps. I used 2 tablespoons ICBINB and 2 tablespoons Marsala wine to saute the chopped stems and 1/2 small sliced onion until soft. I blitzed them in a food processor with 2 ounces light mozzarella until smooth.  I then stuffed the 12 medium Baby Bella caps and sprinkled them with a mixture of 2 tablespoons Panko and 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese. Right before time to eat, I baked them at 350 for 10 minutes, then turned the broiler on until they browned on top. We had many choices of tea, but I had caramel with a splash of skim milk and then a Boysenberry Ceylon, also with skim milk. Oh, this is my plate, but I had one more mushroom cap.

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Party Wedges

I saw a blog with crepes layered with some pumpkin cream filling and it reminded me of baumkuchen. I used to love it. I looked into making it but it seems way more difficult than stacking crepes. Not the same, I know. It also reminded me of something I used to make for parties. It originally came from Mabel Hoffman’s Crepe Cookery book, but I have made many tweaks to arrive at the following:

* Exported from MasterCook *

Party Stacks

Amount Measure Ingredient — Preparation Method
——– ———— ——————————–
Crepes
1 large egg
1 tablespoon dried egg
1 tablespoon water (Or just use 2 eggs)
1 cup flour
1 cup 1% low-fat milk
1/8 Teaspoon salt
1/8 Cup Canola oil
Filling
8 ounces fat-free cream cheese
2/3 cup fat-free cottage cheese
1/2 cup minced red onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
65 grams dried beef slices — finely chopped
50 grams green bell pepper — finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon parsley
1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
Decoration
28 grams pecans — toasted and chopped

Mix crepe batter in a blender. Spoon about 3 Tablespoons of batter into skillet and swirl evenly. This should make 9-10 crepes. Combine all filling ingredients except beef and bell pepper in a food processor and blitz until smooth. Stir in beef and pepper. Spread filling over each crepe. Stack the crepes neatly. Sprinkle pecans around the edge.

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The missing wedge represents two slices of about 100 calories each. They have been removed to protect our nut allergy sufferer. The two youngest girls in my life will be joining us for dinner, so the long-awaited tea party is called for. This is just one of several items on tonight’s menu.

Another quick one is 80g low fat cheddar-jack, 32 g chopped green onion, 3 tablespoons Avocado Oil Mayo mixed and spread on 3 Carb balance flour tortillas. Roll the tortillas and cut into 8 pieces each, resulting in 25 calories per bite.

Lunch today is chili size, yum!