We have updated some of our photos since our initial post in 2013. The whipped feta crostini proved to be a crowd favorite and I was able to assemble them last minute since I did the prep earlier in the day.
I had a small cocktail party for my husband’s new co-workers and since it was from 6 to 8 pm I had to come up with some hardy appetizers, especially since they were mostly men.
Make ahead appetizers were a must so I could socialize instead of being stuck in the kitchen. These two Ina Garten Make Ahead Appetizers are great make-ahead choices definitely emphasize flavors of summer too.
Be sure to follow along all summer as we share several tomato recipes this summer since we have a prolific grape tomato plant growing in our garden. Our other larger tomato plants are being attacked by squirrels and I am finding more on the ground half eaten than on my plates….Love any suggestions.
Ina Garten Make Ahead Appetizers
Our first make-ahead appetizer is Tomato Crostini with Whipped Feta by Barefoot Contessa. You can make the whipped feta a few days in advance. If you are in a rush, buy pre-made toasted bread at places like Fresh Market to save time.
To make these ahead of time
- Toast the slices of bread under the broiler until crisp. They will last all day uncovered.
- Prepare the Whipped feta mixture and store in the fridge
We did not use the pinenuts this time… You can toast the pine nuts and make the tomato mixture an hour before serving. We had leftovers and it was just as good the next day.
Having to run a carpool an hour before the summer party, I mad the tomato mixture and allowed it to sit on my countertop to blend the flavors.
Just before the guests arrived I assembled these flavorful appetizers.
Making these in an assembly line is probably the easiest way.
We just love the colors of this summer appetizer. I think it just screams summer.
The next make ahead recipe shares the flavor of summer figs and salty prosciutto. If your figs are sweet and fresh, just wrap them in the prosciutto and serve. I tasted on before serving this and they needed to be roasted.
You can wrap the halved figs hours before your guests arrive and store them in the fridge in a sealed container. The recipe suggests serving them warm, but with a buffet-style party, that was not possible.
What are your favorite summertime make ahead appetizers?
Other Summer Appetizers you may like:
- 6 ounces good feta, crumbled
- 2 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2/3 cup good olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons minced shallots, 2 shallots
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic, 2 cloves
- 2 tablespoons good red wine vinegar
- 2 pounds ripe heirloom or cherry tomatoes, 1/2-inch-diced
- 3 tablespoons julienned fresh basil leaves, plus extra for serving
- 20 to 25 1/2-inch-thick diagonal baguette slices, toasted
- 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts (optional)
- For the whipped feta, place the feta and cream cheese in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Pulse until the cheeses are mixed. Add 1/3 cup of the olive oil, the lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and process until smooth. Cover and keep in fridge
- For the tomatoes, up to an hour before you're serving, combine the shallots, garlic, and vinegar in a medium bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes. Whisk in the remaining 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add the tomatoes, stir gently, and set aside for 10 minutes. Stir in the basil and taste for seasonings.
- To assemble the crostini, spread each slice of toasted bread with a generous amount of whipped feta. With a slotted spoon, place the tomatoes on top. Put the crostini on plates and scatter with the pine nuts if using. Sprinkle with extra basil and serve.
You can make the whipped feta a day or two in advance
Adapted from Ina Garten Barefoot contessa
Nutrition Information:Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1 crostini
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 165 Total Fat: 14g Saturated Fat: 4g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 10g Cholesterol: 14mg Sodium: 176mg Carbohydrates: 7g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 2g Protein: 3g