When guests drop by unexpectedly this holiday season, keep your good cheer intact with a kitchen well-stocked for easy impromptu entertaining. Appetizers you can prepare with minimal hands-on time and simple enhancements to easy leftovers will make you a gracious, if not gourmet, host.
To whip up special dishes on the fly, you’ll need a few key ingredients on hand. Most drop-in guests aren’t expecting a full meal, so plan instead for lighter fare, such as appetizers and desserts. Use these tips to get started:
- Get creative with the leftovers you have on hand. Turkey can be mixed with vegetables and hummus to create a salad, sandwich or wrap to instantly transform leftover turkey into a treat so tasty your guests won’t even know they’re helping clean out the fridge.
- Rely on versatile ingredients that can pull their weight in many ways. Hummus is perfect for easy entertaining because you can use it in countless ways, from dipping with chips or veggies to easy appetizers and side dishes. Sabra’s line of refrigerated hummus, with 13 flavor combinations to match any recipe, is perfect for a wide variety of uses, and it provides a healthier alternative to traditional snack foods and spreads. In fact, eating two tablespoons of hummus a day helps fulfill your bean requirement for the week.
- Find an easy dessert or two that you can make ahead of time and keep fresh for surprise visitors. Cookies, candies and brownies are all good choices because they store easily. If you’re looking for something more, bread puddings keep up to a week in the fridge for easy reheating, and many pies can be made and frozen ahead of time to simply pop in the oven when guests arrive.
- 1 cup turkey breast, cubed
- 1 tablespoon finely diced scallions
- 2 tablespoons diced celery
- 2 tablespoons diced red pepper
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1/2 cup Sabra Hummus
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Combine all ingredients and stir well.
- Serve in bowl of radicchio as salad, on sandwiches, wraps or as an appetizer with veggies, chips or pita bread.
Twice Baked Potato Jackets with Rosemary
- 8 small Yukon Gold potatoes
- 1 cup Sabra Classic Hummus
- 2 tablespoons chopped rosemary
- extra virgin olive oil (for drizzling)
- salt and pepper
- sea salt
- Heat oven to 425 F.
- Scrub potatoes and poke with fork 2-3 times to allow steam to escape while baking.
- Place whole potatoes on rimmed sheet pan and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes (depending on size of potatoes) or until potatoes are soft; cool for 10 minutes.
- Carefully slice potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop inside into bowl, leaving about 1/4-inch ring of potato around edges.
- Lightly mash potato chunks in bowl; add hummus and stir until combined. Season mixture with salt and pepper, taste and adjust if necessary.
- Using spoon, divide potato-hummus filling evenly among potato jackets and broil for 5-7 minutes or until tops are golden and crispy; watch carefully as they burn quickly.
- Remove from broiler and sprinkle with rosemary and a pinch of sea salt. Serve immediately.