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. I also wanted to find make ahead appetizers so I could socialize instead of being stuck in the kitchen. I am sharing two of the recipes today that are great make ahead choices and share the flavors of summer too.
I will be sharing several tomato recipes this summer as 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.
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. I also bought pre-made toasted bread at Fresh Market to save 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.
Just before the guests arrived I assembled these flavorful appetizers.
The next make ahead recipe shares the flavor of summer figs and salty prosciutto. If you 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?
- 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
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.
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 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. Sprinkle with extra basil and serve.
You can make the whipped feta a day or two in advance
Adapted from Ina Garten Barefoot contessa
- 20 figs large fresh ripe
- 20 slices prosciutto thin ( about 8 ounces)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Snip the hard stems off the figs and cut the figs in half lengthwise through the stem. With a small sharp knife, cut the prosciutto lengthwise into inch-wide strips. Wrap a strip of prosciutto around the center of each fig half, with the ends overlapping. Brush with olive oil and arrange cut side up on a sheet pan.
Roast the figs for 10 minutes, until the prosciutto is a little crisp and the figs are warmed through. Serve warm.
Adapted from Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa