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Holiday Appetizers - Dips and Spreads

Guest Author - Sandy Moyer


Whether your Christmas gathering is an evening with a few friends or a festive gala, a table with an assortment of appetizers surrounding a welcoming bowl of punch is a nice beginning. The earliest guests will appreciate something to take the edge off their appetites while other guests are arriving and give you time to put finishing touches on the rest of the food.

Some of the best appetizers are so simple to make that no recipes are needed -

  • A platter of steamed shrimp served with shrimp cocktail sauce... a combination of grated horseradish and ketchup.
  • Small cocktail sausages in a crockpot, smothered in your favorite smokey barbecue sauce
  • A crockpot full of chicken wings, simmered in sweet & sour sauce, barbecue sauce, honey mustard sauce or hot sauce.

    Cheese balls or cheese logs are an attractive addition to an appetizer table. They're easy to make with various combinations of cream cheese plus a few other ingredients, then rolled in chopped nuts. Here's a recipe for a party cheese ball followed by more appetizer recipes.

    Party Cheese Ball

    • 2 - 8oz. pkgs cream cheese, regular or low-fat - softened
    • 2 cups finely chopped pecans, divided
    • 1 small can (7 oz.) crushed pineapple - drained
    • 1/4 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
    • 2 T. finely chopped onion
    • 1 tsp. salt

    Preparation -
    Beat the cream cheese until smooth. Stir in 1 cup of the pecans plus the other ingredients. Shape the mixture into a ball. Roll in the remaining 1 cup pecans. Wrap in foil and refrigerate for several hours before serving. A food processor can be used for this recipe.

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    Layered Seafood Spread

    Preparation -
    Beat the cream cheese until smooth, then spoon it into a 9" or 10" glass pie plate or other shallow serving dish. Spread to cover the bottom of the dish. In a bowl, combine the cleaned and flaked crabmeat with the taco sauce, horseradish and lemon juice; mix well. Spread the mixture over the cream cheese. Chill for about one hour before serving. Serve with assorted snack crackers.

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    Crab Dip

    Preparation -
    Mix all ingredients together. Blend well or process in a food processor. Chill for about one hour before serving. Add a small amount of sour cream for a thinner dip.

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    Clam Dip

    Preparation -
    Soften the cream cheese. Add the minced clams and chopped onion and mix well. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until well blended. Refirgerate to chill for at least 2 hours before serving. Serve with assorted snack crackers.

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    Dip for Fresh Fruit

    • 1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, regular, low-fat or fat free
    • 4 oz. regular, low fat or fat free sour cream
    • 1/2 box regular or sugar-free vanilla instant pudding
    • 1/4 cup skim milk

    Preparation -
    Mix the cream cheese and sour cream together. Mix the vanilla pudding into skim milk. Combine with the cream cheese/sour cream mixture. Refrigerate until serving. Tor a thinner dip, stir in a small amount of skim milk. Serve with fresh fruit.

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    Pepperoni Pizza Dip

    Preparation -
    Blend the cream cheese with the and Italian seasoning and garlic powder. Spread the mixture in the bottom of an 8" or 9" glass pie or cake pan. Top with half of the mozzarella, then the pizza sauce, then then remaining mozzarella, then the chopped bell pepper & diced pepperoni. Bake in a preheated oven at 350º for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve warm with snack crackers or corn chips.

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    Layered Taco Dip

    • 1 - 16 oz. can refried beans
    • 1 pkg.(4 oz.) taco seasoning mix
    • 1/4 cup green chilies - finely chopped
    • 1/4 cup. black olives - finely chopped
    • 1 small onion - chopped
    • 2 tomatoes - medium size, chopped
    • 8 oz. grated cheddar cheese
    • 1 avocado - medium size, mashed (optional)
    Preparation -
    Mix the taco seasoning and refried beans together. Spread the mixture in a 9" glass pie pan or similar dish. Layer the other ingredients, in the order given, on top of bean mixture. Microwave on full power of for 1 to 1-1/2 minutes. Serve warm with corn chips or tortilla chips.

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    Smoked Salmon Spread

    Preparation -
    Drain the can of salmon. Flake the salmon. In a medium size mixing bowl, combine the flaked salmon, cream cheese, horseradish, onion, lemon juice and liquid smoke. Mix until well blended. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour. Sprinkle with parsley before serving. Serve with wheat crackers or melba rounds.

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    *Candy*

    *Holiday Drinks*

    *Other Appetizers*
    Jalapeno Poppers, Buffalo Shrimp, Crab Melts, and more



    To serve your holiday dips and spreads....

    Sleigh Chip & Dip
    Pfaltzgraff "Winterberry"
    Sleigh Chip & Dip
    Tidbit Bowl Set w/Rack
    Pfaltzgraff "Winterberry"
    Tidbit Bowl Set w/Rack

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    Content copyright © 2013 by Sandy Moyer. All rights reserved.
    This content was written by Sandy Moyer. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Allyson Elizabeth DŽAngelo for details.

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