Home Cooking Recipes
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Quick & Easy
By Beverly Barbour

Nibbles for New Year's

Dieting starts tomorrow so nibble your way through New Year's Eve and if you're giving the party provide plenty of tasty treats for your friends. My good friend and good cook Mary Enright of Belvedere, CA makes a marvelous country pate for the holidays. One of the nice things about the dish is that it can be made well ahead so there is no last minute fussing around. The bad thing about the dish is that there is never any left over for New Year's day brunch (it is delicious on toast).


Serve with crusty French bread and grainy mustard. Mary makes the mustard given below.

2 pounds lean pork. coarsely chopped
2 pounds veal, finely chopped
1 pound ground chicken livers
1 pound salt pork, diced
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 eggs
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon basil
salt and pepper
1/3 cup Cognac

Preheat oven to 32500F. Combine all of the ingredients using your hands. Line a terrine or meat loaf pan with strips of salt pork. Fill with meat mixture, place more salt pork trips over the top. Cover with foil and set dish on baking sheet with a rim to catch the drips. Bake 2 to 2 1/2 hours (depending upon pan size), removing foil after an hour. Cool 1 1/2 hours. Cover top with foil and a board. Weigh it down with canned goods and leave serveral more hours. Pour off any fat and refrigerate. The recipe makes 2 terrines, depending upon the size.


Serve this with country style pates, roast pork or ham.

1 jar (8 oz.) German or polish whole grain mustard
2 teaspoons dry (Coleman's) mustard
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup wine vinegar
2/3 cup vegetable oil
4 to 5 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill
2 teaspoons dried tarragon

Beat first 5 ingredients together with a whisk until emulsified. Whip in the dill and tarragon. Refrigerate at least 3 hours to mellow the flavors.

Another nibble that cries out for mustard is easily made using frozen dough.


Bake the sausage wrapped in puff pastry, cool and slice into rounds.

10 inches of Polish sausage (kielbasa)
puff pastry dough, thawed

Preheat oven to 4250F. Strip the skin from a 10-inch length of polish sausage. Wrap puff pastry around the sausage, enclosing completely. Place seam side down on baking sheet. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until pastry in nicely browned. Cool slightly and cut in 3/4-inch slices. Serve with mustard. Makes about a dozen servings.

If you don't have a round loaf of crusty bread for this Spinach dip recipe (that was given to me many, many years ago by one of my college professors - a wise woman) you can always serve it in a bowl with crackers or thin slices of a long crusty loaf.


Easy and quick to make. Can be made as much as 2 weeks ahead.

1 (10 oz.) package chopped spinach, thawed
1 cup mayonnaise(not salad dressing)
1 cup sour cream
1 can whole water chestnuts, drained and sliced thin
1 box Knorr Swiss vegetable soup mix
1 pound round loaf of sourdough bread

Drain the spinach and squeeze out extra moisture. Combine all ingredients except the bread and chill overnight in refrigerator to soften the dry vegetables in the soup mix. On the day you are serving, slice 1 to 1 1/2 inch from top of the loaf. Hollow out the bread from the center and cut into bite-size pieces. Fill the crusty shell with the spinach mixture and serve with bits of bread or with crackers.


Serve this with radishes and any kind of cracker.

2 cups ricotta cheese
6 oz. Roquefort or other blue cheese
1 teaspoon pepper
6 large egg whites
1/4 cup fresh, thinly shredded Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 3250F. Beat ricotta, Roquefort, pepper and salt together until smoothly combined. Beat in egg white. Scrape mixture into a 10-inch cake pan with removable rim. Sprinkle evenly with parmesan cheese. Bake, uncovered, until cheesecake is firm in center when pan is gently shaken, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool, cover and chill at least 2 hours or up until next day. To serve remove pan rim and set cake on platter.


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