My favourite appetizer for easy warm-weather entertaining (Sweet Pea and Parmesan Tartines)

Part of my warm-weather entertaining manifesto is to keep my gatherings as simple as possible. This encompasses everything from table décor to beverages, and most importantly, food. We host several dinners and social soirées in the spring and summer months, and I’m always on the look out for easy-to-execute lip-smacking appetizers that deliver impressive tastes to my guests. Luckily, these tartines fit the bill perfectly.

While the name sounds highly impressive, tartines (or crostinis) are really nothing more than slices of toasted/grilled bread topped with a little something. It can be as simple as store-bought jam and a slice of aged cheddar, assorted spreads, cured meats, or fresh produce that’s paired with fragrant herbs and oils.

I typically opt for the latter, and they are almost always the highlight of the meal. Lightly buttered bread is usually grilled, rubbed with garlic and then covered with a variety of toppings. For spring, I’m smitten with the combination of sweet peas, Parmesan and mint, but you can use pretty much anything that’s in season.

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Asparagus Goat Cheese Galette

Asparagus Goat Cheese Galette on simplebites.net

Written by Allison of Some the Wiser.

Until recently, I thought pie was one of the best things life had to offer me. Pie, in all its shapes and sizes, is incredibly delicious. However, I’ve always wondered about the old saying “Easy as Pie” because the only thing that is easy about a pie is the eating of it.

Then, I discovered the galette. It’s like a pie but, I dare say, it’s better and perhaps even a bit easier than pie. The crust is buttery and flaky, but it’s not as finicky as pie crust and is pretty in its own simple, rustic way.

Best of all, you can fill it with any number of delicious fruits or vegetables, meats or cheeses, and the galette will be the star of the meal.

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Cheesy Irish Soda Scones

Written by Jan of Family Bites.

I have grand plans to host an Irish-themed Sunday dinner later in the month.

My husband’s grandparents were born in Ireland, as were my own great-grandparents, and I’ve been increasingly interested in learning more about the booming food culture of the Emerald Isle, specifically the regions that were home to our ancestors.

While we all know that potatoes are a staple in the Irish kitchen, I’m not sure it’s common knowledge that the country exports their prized dairy all over the world. The top-quality grass-fed milk produced by thousands of the nations farmers is pure liquid gold, and artisans are bringing the ancient methods of cheese and yogurt making to modern day Ireland.

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Quick Skillet Roasted Vegetables on Cheese Toast

Written by Allison of Some the Wiser.

Most of the time I feel good about my eating habits. I like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and we eat a lot of them most days of the week. However, after all of the holiday festivities from the past month, I feel like I need to re-focus my menu and food choices.

Considering all the candy canes and pumpkin pies I have consumed recently, it feels really good to cut out sugar this month and find my way back to the fresh produce aisle. It can be harder this time of year to find fresh vegetables, but although there isn’t as much variety in the winter, there are a lot of delicious ways to prepare root vegetables.

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How to Roast Sweet Bell Peppers (Recipe: Grilled Summer Vegetable Pizza)

I‘ll be completely honest and tell you that I don’t even bother with meat on my summer pizza. Forget the pepperoni, ham, and yes, even bacon, during June, July & August, pizza is ALL about the glorious vegetables.

And why would you want anything else? Silky, smokey grilled peppers and zucchini, firm young garlic, and sweet cherry tomatoes leave little to be desired for toppings. Winter pizza is another matter completely; for now, the vegetables deserve to shine.

Herbs also play a role in summer pizza toppings, as so Kalamata olives for some balance, and the whole pie is bound together by whatever cheese is hanging out in the crisper.

Two steps elevate a simple summer pizza from ho-hum to heavenly: the first is to grill the aforementioned sweet peppers before adding them to the pizza, and the second is to cook the crust directly on the grill.

In this post, we’ll look at how to do both.

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