Pretty much everyone enjoys winding down after a long day by playing or watching a game from time to time. Whether it be card games, board games or sporting events such as the upcoming annual Super Bowl, snacks occupy an essential aspect of the experience. As a long time vegetarian, I thought it would be appropriate to offer up some healthier alternatives to the greasy and salty snacks that often go along with gaming nights. You shall find no chicken wings nor greasy fries here!
To begin the evening, let us start with some savory appetizers from my kitchen that are sure to get everyone in the party mood.
Stuffed Mushrooms. These earthy mushrooms are stuffed and complimented by a wonderful array of savory flavors, from tart sun-dried tomatoes and Kalamata olives, spices and jalapeños, to creamy and slightly salty goat cheese. An amazing appetizer for any occasion, this recipe can of course be increased in quantity depending on the number of participants attending your party.
Olive Cheese Balls? Imagine a plump green olive nestled in a slightly spicy and crispy cheese pastry. For a maximum burst of flavor, I suggest you use an extra old Cheddar cheese. I'm quite certain you could substitute small sautéed button mushrooms for the olives. Better yet, double this recipe and make both for a simple and perfect appetizer.
Smoked Gouda Gougères are not to be skipped. These delightful little airy puffs can be served with a red pepper dip, or just on their own, as I enjoyed them. Certainly a great hors d'oeuvre or snack and crowd pleaser.
Spicy Roasted Red Pepper Hummus is another popular choice to have on hand for your evening festivities. It's also vegan friendly if you leave out the cheese.
Guacamole served with blue corn tortilla chips or, better yet, homemade Spicy Baked Tortilla Chips can't fail to be a hit. If you want to make it a Mexican party, do include Quesadilla with Mushrooms and Black Bean Pastries on the menu. Your guests might never want to leave after this feast, so choose your friends wisely.
Spicy Nachos loaded with vegetables and smothered in cheese are always a hit and hard to resist. Homemade tomato chutney makes these even harder to resist.
Popcorn is always in order, especially if you spice it up while enjoying a glass of wine. Old fashioned stovetop-popped popcorn goes gourmet in Lisa's Kitchen. Generous handfuls are in order.
Enjoy your evening with good eats and good friends.