Looking for some jazzed up appetizers to offer your guests? These seem really decadent, but by planning ahead you can cut the costs significantly. Watch for sales, be willing to make substitutions that don’t limit the tastiness and balance the menu with some lower cost items such as popcorn. Here are two recipes, one for superior nachos, the other for baked brie, with possible ingredient substitutions and deletions.
1 pound lean ground beef (this can be omitted to become a vegetarian option, or to save $$)
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin (optional)
Pinch of salt
1 small can refried beans, if omitting the ground beef, add an additional can of refried beans
1 bag corn tortilla chips
1-1/4 pounds Monterey Jack or Mozzarella cheese, grated
1 large onion, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 6-ounce can black olives, chopped
Serve warm, with sour cream
3/4 cup raspberry or apricot jam (not jelly)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 8-inch wheel of Brie, about 2 pounds. Yes, this is costly, however, this appetizer will feed a lot of people and in turn can eliminate many different appetizers being offered.
3/4 cup slivered almonds or coarsely chopped pecans, optional (I typically omit the nuts due to cost and to avoid allergy restrictions of guests).
Transfer the Brie to a serving platter. Serve with a knife or spreader, with whole grain crackers or thin-sliced baguette.
Aldis grocery stores have good prices and by checking their ads on line, you can see what is going to be coming up on sale, 2 weeks ads at a time. This helps in planning, by looking ahead, you may find the Brie on sale, or a great price on veggies needed for superior nachos. With locations on both the east and west sides of Madison, the stores are convenient as well.
Here are the addresses of each:
East Side Aldi, 3925 Lien Road in Madison
West Side Aldi, 8222 Watts Road in Madison
Here is the website where you can find upcoming sales, meat specials and more http://aldi.us/index