Valentine's Day Appetizer Recipes

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Whether you are preparing food for a romantic tete-a-tete with your sweetheart, or hosting a Valentine’s Day party for family and friends, your appetizers should be out-of-the-ordinary, light and easy to eat. They should also be quick and easy to prepare so you can spend your time enjoying the company, not working in the kitchen.

Asparagus Wrapped in Prosciutto

So simple, yet looks and tastes like something special.

Ingredients:

  • ½ pound prosciutto, sliced
  • 4 ounces Neufchatel cheese
  • 12 spears fresh asparagus

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Spread Neufchatel cheese on slices of prosciutto.
  3. Wrap the prosciutto with cheese around two asparagus spears.
  4. Lay asparagus spears single layer on baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes.
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Teriyaki Steak Tips

So delicious! Bite size steak tips are tender and flavorful. Be sure to have toothpicks handy for serving.

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 4 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 pounds filet mignon, cubed into 1-inch squares
  • 1/8 cup white wine
  • 1 bunch scallions, chopped

Directions:

  1. Combine soy sauce, sugar and sesame oil in a glass bowl or plastic freezer bag.
  2. Add meat to marinade, refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
  3. Cook in large skillet over medium-high heat until meat is cooked through.
  4. Pour remaining marinade into saucepan, bring to boil.
  5. Add cooked meat, wine and scallions, simmer for three minutes.
  6. Transfer to serving bowl.

Sherry Shrimp

The sherry adds just the right contrast to the spices.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Italian flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes and paprika in large skillet until garlic is golden brown.
  2. Add shrimp to skillet, turn heat to high.
  3. Cook shrimp until they are done, around 3 minutes.
  4. Sprinkle with sherry, salt and pepper, stir well.
  5. Garnish with chopped parsley.

Sourdough Bowl with Brie, Pears and Shallots

This fantastic mixture of sweet and rich tastes is just the thing for dipping on bread.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 shallots, sliced thin
  • 2 pears, peeled, cored and sliced thin
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • ½ teaspoon brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 (8 ounce) round sourdough bread
  • 1 (8 ounce) round Brie cheese
  • ½ cup almonds, slivered

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Melt butter in skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallot, cook while stirring for 1 minute.
  3. Add pears, cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Pour in wine, sugar, thyme, salt and pepper, increase heat and simmer until liquid evaporates and pears are lightly caramelized, around 10 minutes.
  5. Cut hole in sourdough loaf the same size as the Brie cheese. Remove bread down to ½-inch from the bottom of the loaf.
  6. Cut removed bread into bite-sized pieces, set aside.
  7. Score Brie cheese around the edges with ¼-inch deep slices. Use a piece of thin string tied around cheese to cut Brie in half.
  8. Place one half of cheese into sourdough bowl, cut side up. Top with half of the pear mixture, and half of the slivered almonds.
  9. Place remaining cheese on top, layer with the rest of the pear mixture and finish with the remaining almonds.
  10. Place on baking sheet, and bake for 45 minutes or until soft.
  11. Serve with sourdough bread bites.

Fruit Skewers

Skewers of fruit chunks make colorful, healthy and delicious appetizers. Adjust recipe according to seasonal fruit available in your area.

Ingredients:

  • 20 wooden or metal skewers
  • Small pineapple, cut into chunks
  • 20 small strawberries, washed and stem removed
  • Cantaloupe, cut into balls
  • 20 green or red grapes
  • 5 small kiwi fruit, peeled and cut into quarters
  • 3 mangoes, peeled and cut into cubes

Directions:

  1. Slide skewers through fruit pieces, arranging fruit so colors are arranged in a pleasing order.
  2. Place 5 to 6 pieces of fruit on each skewer.
  3. Keep chilled until ready to serve.

Spinach Artichoke Dip

This rich dip is the perfect partner for whole-wheat crackers.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup Alfredo sauce

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In small casserole dish, mix all ingredients thoroughly.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes until lightly browned and bubbly.
  4. Serve with your favorite crackers or French bread.

Keep the love alive this Valentine’s Day with special appetizers that are easy to make and delicious. Be sure to serve on pretty plates and serving bowls, and bring out your best silverware and most delicate glasses. A day dedicated to love and romance is not the time for paper plates, so remember to make your presentation as special as your appetizers.

Last Updated: January 5, 2012
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About Michelle Ullman Michelle Ullman has lived and gardened in Southern California since childhood. A freelance writer, she covers topics ranging from gardening to home improvement to health issues. She also has experience as a catalog copywriter and poet. Michelle has trained and worked as a respiratory therapist and surgical technologist, but prefers to spend her time gardening, and walking with her dog. Michelle holds a Bachelor's Degree from Redlands University in Business Management. 

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