always prepared for lots of eating
Around the holidays, there’s a lot of eating happening. Or is it just me? Eating at home, eating out, eating at someone else’s house, eating at parties… So I love having some super easy go-to foods that are easy to keep on hand and then assemble at the last-minute to put on the table for nibbling, or to take along for contributing to the party. The easiest appetizers require assembly only, and no other prep ahead of time.
assembly only required
Here’s one that’s so easy. Three ingredients. Three! Boursin, balsamic glaze and something to spread it on. Anyone can pull this off in a heartbeat. The only trick is keeping this balsamic glaze in your pantry. Which you should because it’s awesome for fancying up all kinds of other foods too, like avocado, strawberries, tomato slices, roasted meats… When you’ve tried it you’ll think of lots of ways to use it. Trust me.
Lots of times, the real beauty of an appetizer is in the presentation. Hopefully you have a few lovely and simple dishes that you can use to make your food shine. White plates and bowls in a variety of shapes and sizes are versatile and easy to use. Also a few sizes of wooden or slate serving boards come in handy and look great too. If you really just need a tiny plate, I sometimes use the saucer from a cup and saucer set.
white plate + slate serving board + pretty food = awesome appetizer
So let me show you how to make this look beautiful, and everyone will think we’re bordering on Martha Stewart-ness. Are you ready? Here we go. First up these are your three ingredients. Balsamic glaze which I’ve already mentioned. My local grocery store stocks it, but if yours doesn’t, it’s worth hunting down. Boursin. It’s cheese. And someone always asks, What kind of cheese? It’s just Boursin, a brand and style of cheese unto itself, named after the man who first produced and sold it. That’s all I can tell you. It’s a bit like a goat cheese or a cream cheese but not quite, and comes in a few different flavours. You’ll find it in the deli section of your supermarket. I like the low-fat one which is Garlic & Fine Herbs, but all of them are good.
add a pop of colour with a garnish
Besides that all you need is something to spread the cheese onto. Something substantial and crispy to hold up against the spreading of the cheese. Unwrap and unmold it from the foil or container onto your plate. (You may have to fix it up a bit with a knife or spatula to make it look pretty again.) Now here comes the beautiful part… take the glaze and make a fancy pattern over the cheese and the plate…the way they do in restaurants. Have fun! Be freeform and squiggly….or write out a word…or be seasonal. I was doing stars at Christmas. Be creative with it!
be fancy like a restaurant
Then set out your crackers or bread beside it with a small spreading knife and you’re good to go. Well, a little garnish never hurt anyone, right? Anything pretty will do…how about raspberries? What did that take me…maybe four minutes. The hardest part is unwrapping the cheese. Seriously. You’ll never be at a loss when you need a quick appetizer again.
Enjoy your party!