Today is Canadian Thanksgiving and Columbus Day in the States.
Which means that many of us spent much of the weekend cooking up a storm for friends and family.
Having cooked dinners since a young age, I usually can come up with a main and sides with ease. But hors d'oeuvres? Ugh.
I usually have a hard time finding ones that are interesting, yet easy enough that I won't spend all night creating them while the rest of my dinner overcooks or burns.
So when I came across the Tastefully Small Series, I knew that I had found the perfect solution in Tastefully Small Savory Bites: Easy Sophisticated Hors D'oeuvres for Every Occasion by Kim Hendrickson.
Kim writes in the Introduction:
"The recipes in this book contain flavour combinations that I love, in shapes and presentations that will delight your guests yet can be made without anxiety or difficulty. Whether with drinks before dinner, an afternoon tea, or a sumptuous buffet, these recipes will wow your guests and leave you with energy to enjoy the party. These recipes are easy - and very far from the same old variations on meatballs and marinated shrimp."
There are 50 recipes to choose from, which means that I can entertain for until the spring and not have had to reuse a single recipe! And Kim has thoughtfully divided the recipes - seafood, meat, poultry and egg, vegetable and pastry-based bites, as well as naked canapes and helpful tips (like egg wash and estimating hors d'ouevre quantities) - so you can plan around your menu and any food allergies or sensitivities.
And just think about how awed your guests will be when you bring out Curried Cream Mussels, Persimmon Shrimp Bruschetta, Caramelized Onion Lamb Cups, Pulled Pork Scones, Mac 'n' Cheese Tomatoes and Wild Mushroom Rugelach.
What I love about Kim's food is that it is extremely impressive, but you don't have to flip through pages and pages of ingredients and directions. She keeps it simple, so that you can enjoy yourself without getting all stressed out.
I hope you don't mind, but I'm renaming this one my "Dinner Party Bible."
And next time you come 'round for drinks or dinner, don't give away my secret. There's nothing wrong with people thinking you've been slaving away in the kitchen all afternoon!