I was recently asked to make some hors d’oeuvres for an event, and they needed to fit a few specifications. The first being they had to please the palettes of the people eating them (I know most of the guests and what they like and dislike). They also needed a few gluten free options. And, they needed to be “finger foods.”
I actually enjoy cooking or baking for people who have a wish list, or are specific in what they want. It helps me to narrow down the options, and decide what I want to serve. It also forces me to be creative, which is essential to my growth in the kitchen.
So, one of the appetizers I decided to put together were these Italian skewers. I made 3 varieties: GF, tomato free, and one with all of the ingredients. These were incredibly easy – the hardest part was picking the correct ingredients. Here is the recipe:
- Cherry tomatoes
- Black olives
- Green olives
- Basil leaves (washed and torn in half)
- Mozzarella (fresh, cut into cubes)
- Fresh tortellini
You will also need skewers (medium size – longer than toothpicks) and a pastry brush.
The only “cooking” involved in these is to cook and chill the tortellini. It is best to buy fresh tortellini. I boiled it in salted water with 1 Tbsp olive oil, according to the directions, drained it, then spread it out on a baking pan to cool. This helps prevent the pasta from sticking together.
Once the tortellini is cooled, simply assemble the ingredients onto the skewers, keeping the order the same for each skewer. (They can be refrigerated at this point, and kept for several hours before serving.)
Original, Tomato-Free, Gluten Free
After they are all complete, and soon before serving, brush the components of the skewers with pesto. Refrigerate until service.
To make GF, leave out the tortellini.
Some other ingredients that could be used on these would be pepperoni or salami, sausage, and artichoke hearts.
This appetizer would be great for anything from a game night to a wine tasting! Enjoy!