Christmas Day was fast approaching and we (my family, who we were visiting, and I) were planning a big meal, so for Christmas Eve. we decided to make a meal out of just appetizers. We each made a couple, and there was a nice variety.
Since appetizers are useful at any time, but especially now with New Year’s Eve coming up, I thought you might be interested in what we had. The major requirement was that they be pretty simple to prepare and, of course, delicious to eat.
Steamed shrimp with cocktail sauce
Cocktail meatballs in barbecue sauce
Spinach Artichoke Bread*
Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms
Baked Brie Bites*
Hot cider with Honey Liqueur
The starred items were my contributions, so you will find recipes for them here today and tomorrow.
Brie cheese pairs so well with fruit, and this particular mixture of apples, walnuts, bacon and orange is an outstanding combination. Each one is topped with a cranberry, making them festive and cute. They can be eaten with your hands and each one is just a bite or two. These are the perfect option for a snack or to take along to a party. They will definitely be a crowd pleaser. Once you taste them, you will be making them time and time again. Socks optional because they will be blown off!
BAKED BRIE BITES WITH CRANBERRIES
Yield: Makes 24 bites
- 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1 orange, zested and juice reserved
- 2.5 oz. pkg. real bacon bits
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup chopped apple
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 3 Tbsp. brown sugar
- 2 8-oz. pkgs. Crescent Rolls
- cooking spray
- 8 0z. Brie cheese round
- dried cranberries
1. Preheat oven to 375*F. Coat 2 mini muffin pans with cooking spray. (or use 1 large pan with 24 cups)
2. In a small saucepan, melt butter. Add orange juice, bacon bits, walnuts, apple, cinnamon and 3 tablespoons broan sugar. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until sugar has dissolved and apples begin to brown, 3 – 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in orange zest. Allow this mixture to cool a bit while you prepare the dough and cheese.
3. Unroll crescent rolls and pinch together seams to create 1 large sheet with each package of dough.
Cut each rectangle into 12 squares. Place a square of dough in each muffin cup.
4. Cut brie into 24 pieces and place in the center of the dough squares. Top with apple walnut mixture.
Bring edges of the dough to the center and pinch to create a seal. Place one dried cranberry in the center of each bite.
5. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.
SOURCE: Happier Holidays Recipe Book