Gourmet and Healthy Summer Snacks
As the weather warms, our outdoor dining table turns lighter and brighter. This lighter fare is known as tapas, tarailletes, small plates, appetizers or simply snacks. Whether on the back deck or patio, at the local park or lake, perhaps even a baseball or soccer game, the food preferences become more playful and flavorful. We here at The Olive Tap are your resource for ‘snack’ ideas and products which are both healthy and tasty. Have you considered these:
Quintessentially American, popcorn is versatile and satisfies our desire for salty and crunchy. Pop your own organic, non-GMO kernels over the stovetop in healthy 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Flavoring the EVOO popped corn becomes the best part! Transfer the popped corn in a large mixing bowl and toss with a combination of Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, Flavored Olive Oil, and your preference of salt, seasoning, or fresh herbs.
-You can skip the corn for delicious cauliflower in the spicy and addicting recipe for Spicy Chipotle Popcorn Cauliflower.
-Or to if you are pressed for time and need a ready made option, opt for organic EVOO-popped bagged popcorn and add your favorite olive oil/vinegar/salt combination. The possibilities are certainly grand!
Toothpicks or small skewers can quickly bring two or three ingredients together to make a delightful and entertaining dish. Skewers make an easy finger-food to pass among friends or to carry to a picnic. The classics never are boring because the flavors are so perfect and adding quality olive oils, vinegars, and salts further enhance the flavors.
-The Tomato & Mozzarella combination will never get old because the juicy tartness of summer vine-ripened tomatoes with the creaminess of fresh mozzarella is so endearing. Slide a half of a bite-sized tomato with a cube of mozzarella onto a toothpick and drizzle with Basil Agrumato Olive Oil and Aceto Balsamico di Modena Riserva. Finish with Kosher Flake Sea Salt.
-Prosciutto and Melon harmonize salty and sweet; when skewered together with Vincotto, it makes for a decadent offering. If melons are not in season, try other fruits, such as pears, figs, or apples and drizzle with Black Currant Balsamic Vinegar. Or use this recipe for Melon and Prosciutto Bites.
-A Mediterranean skewer of Green olives and Feta benefit from a drizzle of 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Basil Agrumato Olive Oil. Try Black olives with a dry goat’s cheese drizzled with Aceto Balsamico di Modena 4 Leaf or Pomegranate Balsamic Vinegar.
-Smoked Salmon and Avocado cubes drizzled with Sorrento Lemon Agrumato Olive Oil make for a tantalizing treat.
-Check out these Easy Salad Skewers with Lemon Dill Vinaigrette.
Canapés and Crostini
Canapés make a lovely use of Belgian endives or celery stalks…perfectly refreshing for Spring and Summer! Homemade crostini using quality artisan bread with EVOO are a crunchy and satisfying base for many different toppings. Here are some of the possibilities:
-Fill endive leaves simply with your favorite cheese and finish with your favorite Olive Tap olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Try a creamy cheese and finish with Peach White Balsamic Vinegar and Jalapeño Agrumato Olive Oil. Or use this delicious recipe for French Goat Cheese and Garlic Spread to fill the endive canapés.
-Fill sliced celery stalks with Lynn’s Sun Dried Tomato Dip and finish with fresh Rosemary.
-Slice a baguette (or have the bakery do it for you!) and brush with your favorite Olive Tap 100% EVOO, salt, and crushed garlic, if you wish. Toast in the oven until it just browns at the edges. Use a a base for a multitude of different spreads. Tapenade is certainly a favorite! Tapèno is the Provençal word for capers, so tapenades are an olive and caper spread. You can also use sun-dried tomatoes, artichokes, or roasted eggplant. If capers are not to your liking, omit them and make a simple olive paste with green or black olives, 100% EVOO, some fresh thyme and just a splash of Lambrusco Wine Vinegar. This recipe for Crostini with Anchovy Pate and Vincotto adds Mediterranean flair to any get together.
-This Spicy Shrimp Crostini recipe is pleasing to many palates.
-For a sweeter treat, try these Crostini with Goat Cheese, Strawberries, and Orange White Balsamic Vinegar.
Enjoy a bright and flavorful Summer!