Welcome to One Little Corner of the World. I share with you new recipes, some family recipes, and the antics of my kids. Enjoy reading!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

An Appetizer Dinner for Friends

Last night we had friends over for dinner. This year I decided to cook appetizers for them. They are a fun group to cook for, as they are up for trying anything new. The big ticket item this year was the roasted shrimp I made – recipe from Ina Garten. The shrimp turned out so tender and perfectly cooked. It has become my favorite way to roast shrimp. I served it with cocktail sauce and a creamy caper dipping sauce, a recipe I found on Cooking This and That’s blog. She paired it with Ina’s shrimp, so I thought it would be a good choice. Boy, was I right! That oh, so simple, sauce went over big, big, big. No one ate the cocktail sauce.

Creamy Caper Dipping Sauce and Roasted Shrimp

For the shrimp:
1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tablespoon olive oil
kosher salt and coarse ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Place shrimp on a sheet pan, toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast for 7-9 minutes, until just pink and cooked through.

For the dipping sauce:
1/2 cup mayo
1 tablespoon capers, drained
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Kosher salt and coarse ground black pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients for the dipping sauce in medium bowl; mix thoroughly.

In addition to the roasted shrimp from Ina’s kitchen, I also made Ina’s garlic aioli. While Hubby’s family and I love it, it wasn’t the biggest hit at this party. The potatoes were roasted with salt, pepper, olive oil and dried minced garlic. Roasted potato wedges with a dipping sauce are one of my favorite things to eat.

I also made Gringo Meatballs – so simple, yet so tasty. I like the salsa, but the next time, I think I will use the mild salsa instead of the medium. It had a little kick to it. I love the meatballs. I use turkey meatballs – the recipe called for precooked meatballs. Turkey meatballs have a much lower fat content than regular meatballs – the difference is around 12 grams of fat per serving. Butterball makes an Italian style turkey meatball, so it is nicely seasoned. I don't have a picture of these on this post, but click on the link and I have the reicpe and pictures.

Tomato, Mozzarella and Basil Bruschetta was the next item on the menu. I found a recipe from Giada that looked simple and tasty. I bought bread, cheese, and the rest of the ingredients and started to work. The first slice of the knife into the bread produced something that would be harder than a crouton! The bread I had bought that morning was yes…..very stale! I understand that bread gets harder when it cooks in the oven, but it should be so hard that it breaks apart when you try to slice it. I was so disappointed. Being able to salvage the very middle of each loaf, I was still able to make the bruschetta. Light flavors though, made me long for spring and summer! The only thing I didn't do, was put the basil on top of the bruschetta. I was so upset about the bread being sooo stale. I have some of the sauce left from the bruschetta, and I am going to make it into a light pasta sauce.

Cheesy Broccoli dip made an appearance tonight as well. An easy dip, usually a crowd pleaser, didn’t disappoint. This dip can almost be a meal. Made with ground beef, cheese, broccoli, it has all the food groups – just add bread or crackers, and you are ready to go! I didn't take a picture of the dip - it doesn't photograph well, or I don't photograph it well.

Cheesy Broccoli Dip – adapted from the Taste of Home Cookbook

1 large package Velveeta
1 lb ground beef, cooked and drained
1 10 ¼ oz can Cream of Mushroom Soup
2-3 tbsp salsa
1 10 package frozen chopped broccoli – thawed and drained

Cube Velveeta and combine in a slow cooker with all other ingredients. Cook on medium heat until cheese is melted and all ingredients are combined. Serve with chips or crackers.

For the healthy eaters, I also served a veggie tray in my new appetizer dish, compliments of my brother-in-law and his girlfriend – they gave it to me as a Christmas gift. The veggies were served with a spinach dip that I purchased at the Soulard Spice Shop.

For dessert I made brownies – from a mix. I have yet to find a brownie recipe that recreates that yummy cake brownie from my childhood. These brownies, though, were fantastic. I am a total fan of Ghirardelli brownie mixes. They have several different types – I made double chocolate last night. Mmmmm mmmm good!

Dinner with this group is always fun and I truly enjoy getting together with them. It is a shame that we don’t get to see each other more often.

Well, off to the auto show with the family! Have a great day!!


Sinny said...

Where did you get that lovely item in the second to last photo? Wow.

Katie's blog said...

I got it as a gift from my brother in law and his girlfriend. They are terrific people! You should meet them sometime!

dining room tables said...

This is great bunch of dishes! I like it so much especially the shrimps!

HoneyB said...

I love get togethers where you have just appys! We love shrimp (think that is no secret!) and your shrimp dish looks so yummy!

Katie's blog said...

The shrimp was the big winner at this meal! It was the best.