Category Archives: Appetizers & Nibbles

Food Monday ~ Nibbles with a Cheesy Crunch

Nibbles with a Cheesy Crunch
Preheat the oven to 180ºC

  • 200g all plain flour
  • ¼ level teaspoon cayenne
  • ¼ level teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 150g butter, cut in cubes
  • 100g Parmesan cheese, grated*
  • 1 medium egg, separated
  • Pinch of salt
  • Poppy & sesame seeds

Sift the flour, cayenne, mustard & a good pinch of salt into a large bowl. Rub in the butter and then mix in the cheese.Add the egg yolk & 2 tablespoons of water mix until it all comes together, and then knead by hand until smooth.Form into an oblong and cover with food wrap and chill for 30 minutes.Roll out about ⅓ of the dough to 3mm thick between two layers of food wrap.Using the wrap saves using extra flour for rolling.The extra flour prevents crispness.Use small pastry cutters to cut into stars, crescents or circles.Place on baking sheets.Lightly beat the egg white and coat the top of each biscuit.Sprinkle one third with poppy seeds, one third with sesame seeds and leave the remainder plain.**Bake for 12-14 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool.

Store in an airtight container.  Yield about 50 small biscuits

*If you prefer use half and half Extra Mature Cheddar & Parmesan cheese.

** As an alternative brush some with Bovril or Marmite instead of egg white.

Food Monday ~ Country Pâté

Country Pâté

  • 1 lb Chicken Livers
  • ½ lb cooked Chicken
  • ½ lb Chicken fat
  • 2 rashers Bacon
  • 1 clove of garlic crushed
  • 1 Onion
  • few Mushrooms
  • 2 Eggs
  • Mixed herbs
  • pepper & salt
  • flour to thicken
  • 1 glass Brandy
  • ¼ pint Cream

Melt the fat and fry livers, chopped bacon, onions, garlic, mushrooms and seasoning.Keep well covered.When almost cooked add eggs and poach hard in the liquid with the other ingredients.

Skim off some of the fat to seal.

Mince all the above with the cooked chicken meat.Thicken the remaining liquid with flour, cook and fold into minced mixture with brandy and cream.

Press into Pâté dish and chill. Seal with melted fat and continue chilling.

Food Monday ~ Elly’s-It looks like Yeuk-Dip

Elly’s ‘It looks like Yeuk’! – Dip.

Preheat oven to 180 °C

  • 1 bushbok sweet potato
  • 1 decent-sized aubergine
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 garlic bulb
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar (optional)
  • lemon juice
  • Freshly ground black pepper and salt

Peel as much of the papery skin off a garlic bulb as possible while keeping it in one piece, and trim the top so that you open up the top of each clove.
Remove the top off a decent-sized aubergine, and cut in 2 lengthwise.
Peel the sweet potato and cut into roughly 1-inch cubes.
Peel a red onion, top and tail it and cut into 8 chunks.

Place everything in a roasting tray lined with foil and drizzle with olive oil and season well. You can put some balsamic vinegar on the sweet potato and the onion if you like.

Roast for 35-40 minutes, until everything is tender.

Place the sweet potato and onion in a blender, scoop the aubergine flesh out of the skin and push the soft centre from the roasted garlic out of it’s skin and add to the potato and onion. Add a good glug of olive oil and some lemon juice to everything in the blender, then pulverise it – dependant on the consistency you may want to add some water. Keep adding salt, lemon and olive oil to taste.

Best served hot, but can be frozen and defrosted and eaten cold or microwaved.

I have eaten it hot, cold and microwaved from frozen.It still looks like Yeuk, but tastes delicious!

Food Monday ~ Orange Salad

Orange, olive and spring onion salad

This serves four people and can make a dainty first course using the orange shells as containers.

5 large oranges

100g black olives

2 spring onions thinly sliced

1 small lettuce if not using the orange shells.


1 X 5ml spoon caster sugar

1 X 5ml spoon mustard powder

1 X 5ml spoon lemon juice

5 X 15ml spoons French dressing

1 X 15ml spoon chopped mint

Sprigs of mint to garnish

Peel one orange and cut the tops off the other four, then carefully cut a very thin slice off the bottom to give a flat base and allow the orange to stand without rolling over.  Using a grapefruit knife carefully scoop out the orange flesh trying not to break the segments.  Discard all the membrane and pips.  Mix the orange segments, olives and spring onion slices in a bowl.

Mix the sugar, mustard and lemon juice into the French dressing and pour over the orange mixture.  Just before serving stir in the chopped mint.

Serve on a bed of lettuce or if using the orange shells put them on small plates and spoon in the orange salad.  Garnish with a sprig of mint and serve with crusty bread.

Food Monday ~ Party Food

The party season is upon us once more and this week I am giving you some ideas for party nibbles to go with drinks.

Now another little tip from long long ago. On party nights my mother always had a great big pot of soup ready and sitting on the stove. As the party quietened down and was drawing to a close the soup was warmed and mammy insisted on all drivers having a cup full. Soon all the guests were sipping away and warming up inside before heading out into the cold of the night.

During the year I gave you Roasted Pepper Cookies a good match with Mothers Pâté – OK so it contained liver.


Smoked Salmon Roll

2 tsps hot Horseradish cream
8ozs Smoked Salmon
8ozs Cream Cheese
4ozs unsalted butter
2 tblsps Lemon Juice
4 tblsps Single Cream

Put horseradish in a basin.Chop 2ozs of smoked salmon and add to the horseradish.Beat in the cheese, butter, lemon juice and cream.On greaseproof paper, lay out the remaining smoked salmon, overlapping to form a rectangle 10”x 4”.With wet hands shape the cheese mixture into a roll 10” long and place in the centre of the salmon.Fold the salmon edges around the cheese to enclose and roll tightly in the greaseproof paper.

To freeze: Place in plastic bag

To Use: Thaw for 1 hour then cut into ¾ inch slices.Put in the fridge until served (about 1½ hours)


Olive Cheese Balls

Yield 3 dozen.Preheat the oven to 200°C
8ozs Cheddar Cheese grated
5ozs Plain Flour
4ozs Butter melted
Pimento Stuffed olives
½ teaspoon Salt
½ teaspoon Paprika.

Drain olives well. Mix cheese and flour until crumbly. Add butter and mix well with a fork. Mould 1 tsp of dough around each olive and shape into a ball. Place 2 inches apart on an un-greased baking sheet.Cover and chill for 1 hour or longer.Bake for 15 minutes serve hot.

Food Monday ~ Mothers Pâté

Mothers Pâté
Preheat oven to 180°C

8oz Pigs Liver
4ozs Streaky Bacon
1 large Onion chopped
1oz Butter
1 teaspoon Lemon Juice
1tablespoon Chicken Stock
Salt & Pepper
1tblsp Brandy or Sherry

Melt the butter and fry the liver, bacon and onion until tender. Put in food processor with the liquids and seasoning and blend until smooth. Grease an ovenproof dish and pour in the pâté mixture. Stand the dish in a container with an inch of water. Bake in a pre-heated oven for about 1 hour.