Authors: A Veggie Venture
~more recently updated recipes~
2006 Original Post: So there's a blog party and we're all invited! The theme is 'retro appetizers' so pick your decade. I picked mine, the 80s, after encountering slim-pickin' ideas from my small collection of vintage cookbooks.
My grandmother's first cookbook, Meals Tested and Approved, published in 1920 by Good Housekeeping, devoted a chapter to 'cereals for breakfast' and another to 'baking powder biscuits and shortcakes' but not one word to appetizers.
The 1938 American Woman's Cookbook had seven pages of appetizers in a 900-page book, all lobster, caviar, anchovy and foie gras.
The 1959 Electric Cook Book ('your complete guide to cooking electrically') - nothing.
The 1968 Salads, Sandwiches & Hors D'Ouevres seemed certain paydirt except that it was similarly enamored with lobster, caviar and anchovies except for a big nod to northern Europe with the sandwich-cake works of artistry which have appeared, just this week so hardly retro, over at Nami-Nami and cat in the kitchen.
So I turned to a likely source, a cookbook from Canada's Best of Bridge series of cookbooks written by 'ladies who lunch' and yes, play bridge. I figure: with recipes that rely on little more than tins of mushrooms and cream of shrimp soup, retro, it is. Plus, my mom's margin note for the Cheesy Artichoke Nibblers read, "Delicious, had at Lynda's 8/82, made 12/83".
2012: Cheesy Artichoke Nibblers were a big hit at a Christmas potluck last night. They're not too decadent, perfect for holiday gatherings. They even "look" a little bit Christmas-y, yes?! The Best of Bridge, it's a winner again.
RECIPE for CHEESY ARTICHOKE NIBBLERS
Hands-on time: 20 minutes
Time to table: 60 minutes (can be made ahead of time to serve cold or at room temperature or re-warmed briefly in the microwave)
Makes 16 or 25 squares
About half the liquid from a 15-ounce can of artichokes
1 small red or yellow onion, diced fine
1 tablespoon minced garlic (from a jar or substitute 3 cloves of minced garlic)
4 large eggs
Artichokes from the can, drained, the tough bits discarded, chopped
1 4-ounce jar pimento, drained
1/2 cup (65g) fine dry bread crumbs
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Few turns of ground pepper
Few drops of Tabasco (four, today)
8 ounces grated sharp cheddar
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
Preheat the oven to 325F. Spray an 8x8 or 9x9 baking pan.
In a skillet, saute the onion and garlic in the artichoke liquid until soft.
Meanwhile, separately whisk the eggs, then add all the remaining ingredients (except the parsley) and the cooked onion/garlic mixture. Turn into the pan, pressing slightly to make flat. Sprinkle with parsley.
Bake for about 35 minutes or until lightly set. Cool and cut into 16 or 25 squares.
ALANNA's TIPS & KITCHEN NOTES
2006: I only gave this recipe a half chance by substituting on-hand grated Parmesan and omitting the pimento and parsley. This is NOT recommended.
2012: This is a great dish to carry, especially if you plate it on a microwave-safe plate to warm up a little just before serving.
2012: Lazy me, I ran the artichokes through a mini food processor. This was a little "too" processed, chopping them roughly will better maintain the "idea" that there are artichokes in the squares. If you're more lazy than an artichoke idealogue, no harm done.
famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.
© Copyright Kitchen Parade 2006