Small Bites

Tis the season to think about small bites or appetizers.  These are just a few, two are really quick, so let’s talk about those first.

I cut small pieces of Parmesan cheese, wrapped them with a small piece of salami, and stuck a toothpick in it.  A black or green olive skewered on the toothpick, before you stick it into the salami, would work well also.  You could use a different cheese, like Monterey Jack, or a different combo like mozzarella wrapped with sandwich size slices of pepperoni.  You get the picture!  They are good and fast.

The stuffed green olives are marinated, so just keep them in the fridge for any time you need a quick bite for your guests.  Drain a lot of the brine from the olives.  Add lots of chopped fresh garlic, red pepper flakes, and lots of oregano.  Pour in extra virgin olive oil, put the lid on, and shake slightly to combine.   Store in fridge.


Smoked Salmon Stuffed Artichokes or Mushrooms

I've made these with artichoke bottoms (you can buy them canned or jarred) and mushrooms, and they are great either way.


  • 4 TBSP butter, melted
  • 2 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 lb (hot) smoked salmon, flaked up
  • 10 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 2/3 cup breadcrumbs or gluten free cracker crumbs
  • 1 green onion chopped
  • 2 TBSP capers
  • 1 TBSP dill
  • Drizzle of honey
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1/2 cup crushed pecans (optional)
  • 1/2 cup cooked cannellini beans, mashed (optional)
  • Artichoke bottoms or large mushroom caps (stems removed)*


  1. Heat oven to 350°
  2. Place butter and garlic in a baking pan.
  3. Mix salmon and next nine ingredients.
  4. Stuff the artichoke bottoms and place in the pan with the butter and garlic.
  5. Bake until heated through and slightly brown about 20 minutes.
  6. *Note - Artichoke bottoms are just that, the bottom meaty part of the artichoke, not the heart. If you use mushrooms, turn them gill side down on a baking pan, and bake them until they release some of their water. Blot them dry and stuff them.