Mini Florentine Cups, Cheddar Ham Cups and Chicken Taco Cups
(My 100th post)
(My 100th post)
Hors d’oeuvre. According to the dictionary (which I had to use to check on my spelling) “out of the ordinary, apart from the main work, a relish or more elaborate preparation served before the first course of a meal.”
I also found this definition, which I love: “a small bit of appetizing food, as spicy meat, fish, cheese, or a preparation of chopped or creamed foods, often served on crackers or small pieces of toast, for eating at cocktail parties or other gatherings where drinks are served with no other food.” I love how in this official definition they mention specifically where to eat hors d’oeuvres – at a cocktail party or gathering where drinks are served. Don’t let that scare you away from eating them any old night of the week. They make a great casual dinner, with or without drinks.
The recipes below come from two cookbooks I recently purchased: “Kraft Philadelphia Cheesecakes and More” and “Taste of Home Most Requested Recipes.” I tweaked them each a tiny bit. Isn’t it fun that each hors d’oeuvre used something different for its ‘cup’? The spinach cup uses turkey, which I thought would never work, but it is outstanding! These were probably my favorite of the three and I love that they are carb free. They reheated beautifully and made an excellent cold lunch the next day.
The cheddar ham hors d’oeuvre uses a biscuit for its cup, so you know how good those are. Tender, cheesy, a bit chewy. These were my son’s favorites – a great after school snack the next day. These also reheated beautifully.
The chicken taco uses a wonton wrapper for its cup – you can find wontons in the produce department of larger grocery stores. Super easy and super fun to use. They were really crisp and chewy. These could be garnished with black olives, jalapenos, green onions or even more cheese. Really, really fun! We all loved these!
Mini Florentine Cups (makes 24)
1 9 ounce package frozen chopped spinach-thawed, and well drained
½ Cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 Cup low-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel cheese)
2 Tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
24 slices Oscar Mayer Deli Style Shaved Oven Roasted Turkey Breast
Allow the spinach to thaw for a while and then run hot water over it through a wire sieve. When all the icy parts are thawed, squeeze every drop of water out of it. Using a fork, mix together all the ingredients (except turkey). This takes some elbow grease, but be persistent. Arrange the turkey carefully in ungreased mini muffin tins. Divide the cheese mixture evenly between the ‘turkey cups’ – I resorted to using my hands because the mixture was way too stubborn for spoons. Bake 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
Cheddar Ham Cups (makes 2 ½ dozen)
2 Cups shredded cheddar cheese
5 ounces thinly sliced deli ham, finely diced
3 slices bacon, diced and fried until crisp
½ Cup mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
3 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 tube refrigerated flaky biscuits (10.2 ounces)
Cut each biscuit into thirds and press each tiny section into ungreased mini muffin tins, using your fingers and thumbs to press them up the sides. Mix the remaining ingredients and divide evenly between the biscuit cups. One important note: if you are using a nonstick pan, these will come out like a dream. I don’t recommend an aluminum pan because the cups won’t come out nicely. (I know this from experience!) Bake 9-11 minutes in a 450 degree oven. Allow to rest in the pan for a few minutes before removing.
Chicken Taco Cups (makes about 36)
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 package low-sodium taco seasoning
1 small onion, diced
2 C red salsa
2 C shredded cheddar cheese
36 wonton wrappers
Stir the chicken cubes and taco seasoning until well blended. Cook chicken until juices run clear- about 5 minutes. Transfer cooked chicken to food processor and process until finely chopped. In a bowl, combine chicken, salsa, onion, and cheese.
Press wontons in greased mini muffin tins and bake for 5 minutes at 375 degrees or until lightly browned. (Peek in the oven and make sure the wontons don’t fall in on themselves – you want them to remain wide open.)
Remove from oven and fill with chicken mixture. Bake for another 15 minutes or until warmed through. Garnish as desired.
I think all three of these would be great served not only as hors d’oeuvres or as a light dinner but at a breakfast buffet or with a salad luncheon. The Cheddar Ham Cups and the Chicken Taco Cups both froze and reheated perfectly. Enjoy these!