The holiday entertaining season is coming quickly – that means lots of food, fun, friends, family, and…stress over what to serve or bring to holiday parties. You can whip up some healthy and delicious dishes very quickly, so you can spend more time enjoying all of the fall and winter celebrations – and less time stressing over what to make. Here are three of my very favorite appetizer recipes to share with family and friends. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.
Raw Walnut Taco "Meat"
Perfect for tacos, burritos, nachos, salads and so many more finger food favorites!
- 1 cup raw walnuts soaked 3-4 hours and dried
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 pinch cayenne
- 1/3 cup olive oil optional, may be made oil-free
- 2/3 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon tamari or soy sauce
- black pepper to taste
Pulse walnuts in a food processor until crumbly but not pasty.
Dump processed walnuts into a bowl and add other ingredients, mixing until all ingredients are well incorporated.
Keeps for 4-5 days in the fridge.
Creamy Roasted Tomato Bisque
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups organic vegetable broth
- 2 14.5 ounce cans organic fire-roasted tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil divided
- 1 teaspoon real maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup cashew cream see note
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook and stir onion and garlic in hot oil until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes.
Pour vegetable broth over the onion mixture; add tomatoes, 1 tablespoon basil, maple syrup, and red pepper flakes. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, place a cover on the saucepan, and simmer until the tomatoes are really soft, about 15 minutes.
With a hand held, immersion blender, blend soup until creamy, careful to keep blender from splashing.
Put pureed soup over medium heat and cook until hot, about 5 minutes. Stir remaining tablespoon basil and the cashew cream into the soup. Serve with a yummy hot sandwich or as shooters!
To make cashew cream, blend equal parts cashews and water.
Ceviche is always fun and for folks who don't do seafood, this vegan version is sure to please!
- 1/2 cup lime juice freshly squeezed
- 2 tablespoons lime juice freshly squeezed
- 1 cup mushrooms, oyster or Portobello finely chopped
- 1 cup hearts of palm drained and finely chopped
- 1/2 medium red onion finely chopped
- 1/3 cup fresh cilantro chopped plus extra sprigs for garnish
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1/2 cup cucumber peeled and finely diced
- 1/2 cup jicama finely diced
- 2 Roma tomatoes finely diced
- 1 small avocado peeled, pitted, and cubed
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
Bring 1 quart salted water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons of the lime juice. Add mushrooms & hearts of palm, cover and return to a boil. Immediately remove from heat and drain water. Cover with the lid and set aside, letting mushrooms and palm hearts steam in closed pot for 10 minutes.
Drain mushrooms and palm hearts again to remove remaining liquid and put in large bowl to cool completely. Toss with remaining 1/2 cup of lime juice, cover and refrigerate for about 1 hour.
In a small strainer, rinse chopped onion under cold water, then shake off excess liquid. Add to mushroom and palm heart bowl along with chopped cilantro, garlic, olive oil, cucumber, jicama, tomato and avocado.
Mix gently and season with salt and pepper.
Cover and refrigerate up to 3 hours.
Spoon the ceviche into martini glasses or small bowls. Garnish with sprigs of cilantro and slices of lime. Serve with crackers or tortilla chips.
Do your best to find palm hearts that are not canned in salt water.
About the Author
Carolyn Scott-Hamilton is the creator and host of The Healthy Voyager web series, site, and overall brand. An award-winning healthy, special diet and green living and travel expert, holistic nutritionist, plant based vegan chef, best-selling cookbook author, media spokesperson, sought after speaker, consultant and television personality, she is a respected figure in the world of healthy lifestyle and travel as well as special diet cooking and nutrition. The Healthy Voyager aims to help people live well, one veggie at a time! Follow Carolyn on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.