Magazine article Sunset

Scoop-and-Eat Appetizers

Magazine article Sunset

Scoop-and-Eat Appetizers

Article excerpt

For relaxed entertaining, flavorful mixtures to scoop up and eat are among the most easily managed appetizers. They can be ready on call and require no last-minute assembly or individual touches. Each of these five appetizers is so simple to make, you can whip it up in minutes. All of them can wait up to a day in the refrigerator. If served chilled, they stay fresh at least 3 hours.

All can be served from bowls, but the carrot hummus (a wholesome and colorful variation on traditional hummus) and the two cheeses are firm enough to swirl into mounds and present on handsome platters, surrounded by their accompaniments. Look for tahini (ground sesame paste) for hummus with fancy foods in the supermarket.

Carrot Hummus

1 1/4 pounds (5 large) carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces

2 cans (15 1/2 oz. each) garbanzos, drained

2/3 cup tahini (sesame seed paste) 3 cloves garlic

2/3 cup lemon juice Salt Baby carrot (optional) Toasted pocket bread or crackers

In a 2- to 3-quart pan, combine carrots and 3 cups water. Cover; bring to a boil. Simmer until carrots mash easily, 15 to 20 minutes; stir occasionally. Drain.

In a food processor, whirl carrots, garbanzos, tahini, garlic, and lemon juice until smoothly pureed (or rub through a food mill). Add salt to taste. Serve, or cover and chill up to a day. Mound into a bowl; top with baby carrot. Scoop onto pocket bread. Makes 5 cups, 20 servings. Per 1/4 cup: 114 cal.; 3.9 g protein; 4.9 g fat (0.7 g sat.); 15 g carbo.; 151 mg sodium; 0 mg chol.

Pool party appetizers (page 128) include toasted pocket bread for scooping tropical salsa, egg salad, carrot hummus (in triangle dishes).

Dilled Egg Salad

10 hard-cooked large eggs, shelled and mashed

1/2 cup unflavored nonfat yogurt, light sour cream, or sour cream

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or 2 teaspoons dried dill weed

2 teaspoons prepared horseradish

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire Salt Fresh dill sprigs Toasted pocket bread

In a bowl, stir together eggs, yogurt, lemon juice, dill, horseradish, Worcestershire, and salt to taste. Serve, or chill airtight up to a day. Mound in a bowl and garnish with dill sprigs. Scoop onto toasted pocket bread. Makes about 2 1/2 cups, 20 servings. Per tablespoon: 21 cal.; 1.7 g protein; 1.3 g fat (0.4 g sat.); 0.4 g carbo.; 19 mg sodium; 53 mg chol.

Tropical Salsa

Scoop onto taro or plantain chips, or blue or yellow corn tortilla chips; you'll need at least 4 cups. …

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