Festive appetizers: There’s a party in my mouth!

The holiday season is bad news for everyone on a diet. Just when you think you can’t swallow another bite of honeybakedhamturkeypotatosalad, there comes another dinner invite you can’t refuse. These little party appetizers I made recently are no help to the waistline either, but what the heck…that’s what New Year’s resolutions are for.

I was inspired watching the inimitable Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall bang about his kitchen making stuffed goose, mulled cider and mince pies – there’s nothing like the River Cottage Christmas episodes to get you in the mood for Christmas cooking and entertaining.

From his sublimely funny latest series, River Cottage: Three Go Mad (the Christmas special) I got the recipe for these mushroom croquettes.

The recipe uses wild mushrooms and oak moss, both of which I did not use. Substituted instead with brown button mushrooms and some blue cheese. They were creamy on the inside and crunchy on the outside, and with a small green salad, perfect for a winter’s day lunch.


Rolled and breaded and looking more like white chocolate truffles

Rolled and breaded and looking more like white chocolate truffles. But these small balls didn’t work out so well in the fryer, better to follow the recipe’s suggestion of short, sausage-shaped croquettes.

The other appetizer that got me salivating uncontrollably was these courgette polpette (which are traditionally Italian meatballs) made with browned courgette and cheese. There is something about carmelised courgettes (Mr T insists that I call them zucchini) that is delightfully sweet and umami-like. I never liked courgettes, sorry zucchini, before this, but this polpette have proven to be a game, or should I say, a taste changer.

Before: Plop onto a baking sheet and it's ready for the oven

Before: Plop onto a baking sheet and it’s ready for the oven

After: Pop into mouth and prepare for an umami revelation

After: Pop into mouth and prepare for an umami revelation


With that I’d like to wish all of you a wonderfully merry and belly satisfying Christmas. I’ll be back with Hugh’s Stuffed Roast Goose on Boxing Day… if I haven’t exploded with overeating by then.

PEACE on earth and goodwill to men!


About Mizdee

Food, food, food. Apart from love, it's the other thing that makes the world go round. When I'm sad it's a comfort, when I'm happy it's a celebration and when I'm not hungry, it's just greediness. But hey! Why not? Life is short too pass up a good meal.

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