By Betha Merit
Sometimes it is helpful to have a few light food offerings up your sleeve. What better meal than a trio of appetizers with pairings of wine? Well, maybe steak and lobster with a chewy cabernet is preferable, but that is for another day.
The following food bites are high in protein, so a lovely baguette with herbed butter is a welcome accompaniment. Note the wine pairing suggestion for each. You may prepare some of the foods ahead, and just assemble in the galley, as you like. For each recipe you can find several variations on the internet, just tweak to your desired combinations.
Pair with sparkling wines like Prosecco or Cava. Serves 8
- 24 slices salami (Genoa) about 4” diameter
- 1 cup marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped fine
- 1/3 cup roasted red peppers, drained and chopped fine
- 2 Tablespoons pitted and chopped Kalamata olives
- 4 ounces chopped fresh mozzarella
- 1/3 cup chopped basil, save some for garnishing
Place one salami slice in each regular sized muffin cup, so it comes up the sides. Bake at 400 degrees for about 7 to 10 minutes or until salami is crisp. Let cool at room temperature. Next, in a large bowl stir together artichoke hearts, roasted peppers, Kalamata olives, most of basil, and the mozzarella cheese. Pepper to taste. If this mixture is made ahead, flavors meld excellently. Place the salami cups on a platter, and fill with the artichoke mixture. Garnish with remaining chopped basil.
HONEY GARLIC MEATBALLS
Pair with a Pinot Noir. Serves 6-8.
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 28-ounce bag cooked frozen meatballs
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
Mix together brown sugar, honey, ketchup, soy sauce, peppers, and garlic. Place frozen meatballs in a 3 to 4 quart crockpot/slow cooker, and pour sauce over meatballs. Stir so all are coated evenly. Cook on LOW for four hours, stirring occasionally. Serve with toothpicks, appetizer forks. Also great served over rice or noodles.
HAM CHEESE APPLE WRAPS
Pair with Sauvignon Blanc or unoaked Chardonnay. Serves 4
- 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 large Granny Smith or Gala apple. Cut into 12 slices, brushing slices with lemon or orange juice to deter browning.
- 4 ounces Cheddar cheese (or Swiss cheese etc.), sliced into 1/4” thick triangles
- 4 ounces thinly sliced deli ham, cut in slices to cover half the apple
In a small bowl, stir together yogurt and mustard until smooth; set dip aside. On one apple slice, center a piece of cheese; wrap tightly around middle with a strip of ham. Repeat with remaining apples, cheese, and ham. Serve with dip on the side.