Friday, August 12, 2016

Finger Food Night (Hatch Bottle Caps, Tasso Nachos, & Ham Roll Ups)

      One of our favorite nights for dining either at home or on the road is 'Finger Food Night' which occurs about once every 3 to 4 weeks.  For us it is the best of departures from the norm we all too easily get ourselves into.  Casseroles, soup, sandwiches, steaks, chicken or fish whatever.....yada yada yada.....NO.  Time for simple and delicious!  Finger Food Night can be anything you want it to be.  It can be nachos, bruschetta, stir fry, shishkabobs, cheese & crackers.....WHATEVER!   Some of our favorite ingredients include cantaloupe, peaches, tomatoes, prosciutto, mozzarella, salami, smoked fish, ham, pork, capers, bacon, shrimp, artichokes, chorizo, and any kind of cheese.  Sometimes it can be the result of impromptu shopping at a local produce stand or market on our way down the road.  We have never really gotten into Fondue, but who knows in the future?  It does not have to be associated with a game night, company, or other occasion.  But, it does take some planning.  How much is enough?  What flavors blend well together?  For this particular evening I had planned a bit of a SW style, but inventory provided me with an avenue for some fusion.
      I found this recipe for Chile Pepper Bottle Caps a few months back and really wanted to try them.   I had to modify them a bit by using Anaheim peppers as Barb doesn't tolerate the MOLTEN HOT STUFF  as much as I do, but the flavor is just as wonderful.  Dip is optional.  It is a simple meal of sliced peppers (your choice) dipped in egg wash and then in flour with garlic powder, paprika, and fried.  
      The second course is an old stand by.........nachos, but with a twist.  I diced a half pound of Tasso (Cajun Bacon) to add to the tortillas chips, topped with some mild New Mexico #9s, and of course the required nacho cheese.

      This meal's last course is one of my wife's specialties.  Ham Roll Ups are simply Mini Sweet Gherkin pickles rolled up with cream cheese (I use Neuchatel for 1/3 less fat) and ham resulting in a roll that when sliced resembles a meat and cheese California Uramaki Roll.  There are many variations of this recipe online, including substituting anything from jalapenos to green onions for the pickles.....I'm sure that is just as delicious.  Simple, sweet, and savory.....I love Ham Roll Ups! 

      Such is Finger Food Night.......all part of the eclectic experience.  It works very well for us on the road or at home.  Of course this is usually reserved for just Barb and I making it a more personal dining experience.  Add a glass of wine, a dram of scotch, or a beer.  Blend in a movie or campfire and the evening is set wherever you would like it to go.  Tonight it's the Packers Browns preseason game......GO PACK GO! Joie deVivre.........Laissez les bon temps Rouler!   

"Hors d'oeuvre:  A ham sandwich cut into 40 pieces"
                                                                                      Jack Benny

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