Quick {healthy} appetizers

My sister, Tara, recently hosted her monthly wine club get-together and requested some appetizers to share.  I find simple foods are often more of an “entertaining hit” especially with women like me who prefer healthy and delicious things on my plate, too.   I thought I’d share three of my favorite entertaining-friendly apps that all can be thrown together quickly whether it be a last-minute shindig or something you’ve prepared hours in advance.  Keep in mind, all of these are merely ideas rather than exact recipes, per se.  So, go wild!

Caprese Sticks
  • cherry tomatoes
  • basil
  • mozzarella
  • balsamic vinegar
  • olive oil
  1. Assemble tomatoes, basil and mozz on a toothpick.
  2. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
  3. Also feel free to knock yourself out with salt and pepper.

Cucumber Hummus Cups
vegan, gluten-free

(You may absolutely use store-bought hummus in place of the homemade. I just prefer to make my own because hummus is impossibly simple and quick and can be made with things typically found in your pantry.) ** These are the ingredients I used to make this version. I’ve never made the same version twice, as I use what I have. So get creative with what you have on hand!

  • garbanzo beans
  • tahini
  • lemon-thyme (I’ve never seen this herb before, but I snatched it up at Central Market because it smelled divine.)
  • juice of one lemon
  • paprika
  • garlic powder
  • bell pepper, sliced
  • chives, finely chopped
  • cucumber
  1. Add ingredients to your blender.  Blend until smooth.  If you desire a less-dense consistency, olive oil is great.
  2. Slice cucumber and hull out center leaving a cup-shaped hole.
  3. Fill with hummus.  Garnish with bell pepper and top with chives.

Fruit Bowl
vegan, gluten-free

A fruit bowl made from a watermelon is the perfect something to bring along to a party not only because everyone loves fruit, but because you don’t have to worry about taking back your serving dish or purchasing disposable dishes.  Weird? Maybe.  But that’s the number one reason I love this.  Use any and all of your favorite fruit!

  • watermelon
  • grapes
  • clementines
  • cantaloupe
  • blueberries
  1. Cut off the top part of your watermelon.
  2. Scoop out watermelon guts.
  3. With a pencil and a glass as a stencil, trace to make scalloped edge.
  4. Carefully cut and remove excess.
  5. Throw in every fruit you can find.