Tag Archives: appetizer

Roasted Chile Cheese

Roasted chile cheese is a mix of roasted New Mexico chile, 3 cheeses, lime, and a few other ingredients. Makes a spicy party dip or filling for a grilled cheese. mjskitchen.com


Roasted Chile Cheese is a twist on the traditional pimento cheese.  However, instead of roasted pimento peppers, roasted chile cheese is a mix of roasted New Mexico red and/or green chile, three cheeses, green olives, and a bit of this and a bit of that.  It has no mayonnaise or salad dressing as a pimento cheese might have making it a pure celebration of the marriage of roasted chile and cheese.  It’s sweet.  It’s spicy.  And it’s darn good!!!

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Smoked Salmon Appetizer – Four Ingredients

Smoked Salmon Appetizer - A quick & easy appetizer of smoked salmon, capers and onion mjskitchen.com


This smoked salmon appetizer is a delicious bite that will make everyone happy, and that honestly takes no more than 15 minutes to make, provided you don’t smoke the salmon yourself.  You’ll love hearing your guests going “YUM” with the first bite.  So if you enjoy smoked salmon and want to celebrate its flavor, not hide it, this is a great little appetizer.  Four ingredients are all you need – salmon, capers, onion and just a touch of mayo. Crackers or crispy toasts (o.k. that’s five) are used to serve it. Apples can be used in place of crackers or just added to the plate as a sweet crispy accompaniment.

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Cucumber and Cream Cheese Crostini

A simple cucumber crostini with garlic cream cheese and a touch of chile. #crostini @mjskitchen mjskitchen.com


Last summer I stopped by a friend’s house to pick some fresh basil (she had tons!), and she served afternoon tea and cucumber sandwiches.  The sandwiches weren’t much more than a slice of cucumber on bread, but they were so refreshing and tasty. These simple sandwiches were the inspiration for the cucumber crostini with cream cheese.

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Tortellini with Roasted Pepper and Onion

Tortellini with Roasted Pepper and Onion sauce @MJsKitchen

In the fall when red bell peppers are plentiful and cheap, I buy a lot of them. Most get roasted and peeled, then wrapped individually for the freezer.  All winter I used them on pizza, in sandwiches and pasta dishes, and in salads.  The other night in trying to come up with starter for a small dinner party, I found the last two frozen bell peppers buried in the freezer. That lead to the creation of this roasted bell pepper and onion appetizer.  It was a big hit and I will be making it again!

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Sweet and Spicy Pepitas

Sweet and spicy pepitas (pumpkin seeds) #pumpkin #seeds @mjskitchen mjskitchen.com


These Sweet and Spicy Pepitas (pumpkin seeds) are so good and quite addicting!  A batch can disappear as quickly as it can be made and that’s fast!  These make a great snack, but can also be used in a variety of dishes from salads to soups.  Suggestions on different ways to use them are provided in the Kitchen Notes.

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Roasted Garlic Feta Dip with Capers

A quick and easy roasted garlic feta dip. Only 4 ingredients! #roasted #garlic @mjskitchen mjskitchen.com


Remember my Roasted Garlic Infused Olive Oil from a while back? Well, this Roasted Garlic Feta Dip is one of those tasty little appetizers that I throw together using the roasted garlic.  Putting a dip together can’t get much quicker than this. Four ingredients and a box of crackers or chips is all you need.
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Garlic Soup

Garlic soup is a very tasty way to take advantage of the health benefits of garlic.  It’s SO much better than taking a garlic pill!  To make it even healthier, add some sauteed mushrooms to the finish soup.  See the Mushroom Garlic Soup Recipe.

Bowl of Garlic soup with a garnish of parsey

On one of our trips to New Orleans, Bobby and I ate at Bayona, owned by Chef Susan Spicer.  I had a rabbit dish that was absolutely delicious as were all of the other meals that were eaten at our table that night. So you can imagine how excited I got when one of my cooking shows did a short segment on Bayona’s Garlic Soup.  I immediately looked it up on the internet and bookmarked it to make one day.  Well, that day has come.

But – as some of you may already know – I’m not very good at following a recipe, so the soup I ended up tasting different from Bayona’s Garlic Soup. How different?  I have no idea and may never know because this garlic soup was so good that I don’t think I could make it any other way.

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Roasted Bell Pepper Appetizer

Roasted Bell Pepper Appetizer with toast

A reader’s comment  – “I served this appetizer with 5 others on Thanksgiving, and it was, BY FAR, everyone’s favorite appetizer…FABULOUS!!”

This Roasted Bell Pepper Appetizer is a delicious and healthy little appetizer made with a mix of beautifully roasted, sweet bells. Any combination of colored peppers work. Yellow, orange and red make a nice looking appetizer, whereas, green and red peppers can be very festive during the holidays.  If by some miracle you have leftovers, you can use them as a relish for sandwiches or as a replacement for the Jamaican Jerk seasoning in a tortilla egg sandwich if you feel like sweet rather than spicy.

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Mediterranean Feta Dip

Feta dip with cucumber, tomatoes, spice and lots of goodness @mjskitchen

Back in the 80’s there was a wonderful little Mediterranean restaurant in our neighborhood that served a feta cheese dip we absolutely loved.  When the restaurant shut down, I was determined to recreate the dip so we could have it any time we wanted it.  It took a few tries but I was finally successful.  This dip with feta and cucumber makes a great appetizer, a party dip, or an afternoon snack.

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