Archive for the ‘Snacks/Appetizers’

Artichoke and Chickpea Chipotle Chow

July 01, 2012 By: Megabeth Category: Sandwiches, Snacks/Appetizers

This recipe was inspired a shopping trip to the local organic market. I found a jar of organic spicy chipotle relish and I really, really wanted to make something good with it.  The original recipe that I found, from A Veggie Venture, used little tiny pickles, so I substituted the relish for them. And, double bonus points, I had to do less chopping as a result.

This recipe can be easily changed to perhaps an Old Bay Seasoning or Lawry’s Season Salt flavor profile. Just adjust the type of relish and seasonings you use. I also used a soy mayonnaise to make it vegan.
It’s a versatile and spicy chow – spread it on crackers, sandwiches, tortillas…you name it.
Artichoke and Chickpea Chipotle Chow
Inspired and Adapted from A Veggie Venture

16 ounces canned artichokes, drained
16 ounces canned chickpeas, drained
1/2 a small onion, roughly chopped
1/4 cup spicy chipotle relish
1/3 orange bell pepper, roughly chopped
1 rib celery, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon capers
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup soy mayonnaise
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon good mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender.

Process until mixed but still chunky. Refrigerate for a few hours preferably overnight to let the flavors meld.


Cashew Cheez

May 15, 2012 By: Megabeth Category: Other, Snacks/Appetizers, Uncategorized

Cashew Cheez (3)I think I ended up eating 99.9% of this cashew cheez all on my own because I was certainly not sharing it. Sure, the In-house Taste Tester maybe got a piece of bread and a cracker or two with the cashew cheez spread on it. This stuff didn’t stand a chance in this house once I discovered how fantastically good it is. (However, lest you think I’m a total glutton, I ate it all over the course of a few days and not just one one sitting…)

What makes it good is the flavor explosion from the cashews with the bite of the green onions. Make sure you puree the cashews so it’s nice and smooth. This is nothing like you’d get in the store and it makes a decent amount so it’s worth investing in the cashews. (I bought mine in bulk at the organic store.)

If you don’t have nama shoyu use tamari, soy sauce or some liquid aminos. The cheez keeps well in the fridge and can serve both as a spread or a dip. It’s good enough to serve for company, but, like me, you’ll find it’s so good that I don’t think you’ll want to share it with anyone else but your self.

“Conquering Lion Cashew Cheez”
from Vegan World Fusion Cuisine

  • 2 cups cashews
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1/3 cup red pepper diced (I omitted this)
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons green onion, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons cilantro, minced (I used parsley)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon nama shoyu, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • Pince crushed red pepper flakes

Cashew Cheez (1)

Blend cashews with filtered water until very smooth. Place in a 1/2 gallon open-mother glass jar.Cover tightly with plastic wrap and secure with a rubber band.

Cashew Cheez (3)Cover with a towel and allow to sit in a warm place overnight.

Cashew Cheez (1)Our cashew mixture into a large mixing bowl, combine with remaining ingredients and mix well.

Cashew Cheez (2)

Black Bean Chipotle Hummus

November 27, 2011 By: Megabeth Category: Snacks/Appetizers

Minimal chopping? Ingredients that I already had on hand? Throw everything in a blender and that’s it? A unique, spicy hummus? Sign me up. No lie. This took less than 5 minutes to make. And, to quote the writer of this recipe, it’s “Oh so good.” (Honestly, I didn’t think Mr. Food was still around. I remember watching him on the noontime news, in the days before the Food Channel and cable tv, when I was home sick from school…)

By the way, not sure what to do with the leftover adobo chilies that came in the can? Throw in a ziploc bag, flatten it out and place in the freezer. When frozen the chilies are easy to break apart to chop up to throw in your chili.

Black Bean Chipotle Hummus



  • 2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, drained with 1/4 cup liquid reserved
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 chipotle pepper plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from can)
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (3 to 4 limes)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro


  • Combine all ingredients in a food processor.

  • Process until mixture is smooth and creamy, and no lumps remain, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • Makes 2 cups hummus dip.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Diet type: Vegetarian

Number of servings (yield): 4


Basil Sun-dried Tomato Goat Cheese Spread

November 21, 2011 By: Megabeth Category: Snacks/Appetizers

Layers of goat cheese, sun-dried tomatoes and basil. Oh yeah, there’s nothing wrong with that – especially when you’ve got to feed a lot of people. Or, perhaps distract folks while you head back into the kitchen to work on the rest of the meal.

I embellished this recipe only a tiny bit by adding some red leaf basil along with the fresh oregano.  This went very over well at a company potluck with some folks remaining non-believers that I actually made it.

Oh, I also had to improvise a bit because I didn’t have a 8 x 4-inch loaf pan. Fortunately, I just happened to buy a package of flatbread crackers that came in a little plastic container that was perfect as a mold. You could probably also get a little more “Martha Stewart” on the presentation than I did but you get the idea.

Basil Sun-dried Tomato Goat Cheese Spread


  • 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 8 ounces goat cheese
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh or 1 1/4 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup basil pesto
  • 1/2 cup dried tomatoes in oil, drained and chopped
  • Garnishes: dried tomato slivers, fresh oregano sprigs
  • French bread slices or crackers

Process first 5 ingredients in a food processor until smooth.

Spread one-third of cheese mixture in bottom of a plastic wrap-lined 8- x 4-inch loaf pan. Top with pesto; spread one-third cheese mixture over pesto.

Sprinkle with dried tomatoes; top with remaining cheese mixture. Cover and chill 8 hours.

Invert spread onto a serving plate, discarding plastic wrap.

Garnish, if desired. Serve with French bread slices or crackers.

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