Food

A tapas-style take on a Mother's Day brunch

by Alison Ladman, Associated Press

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AP Photo / Matthew Mead

Front to back are smoked schmeared potatoes, stuffed baby bell peppers, strawberry croissant skewers, and chorizo hash stuffed mushroom caps. These recipes make a pretty presentation together on a serving tray.

A tapas-style meal made up of a variety of small, appetizer-like bites is something we tend to associate with evenings and cocktails. But we thought the same idea of small plates would lend itself perfectly to a Mother’s Day brunch. So we came up with a variety of tapas ideas suitable for Mom’s big day.

Use these ideas as a jumping off point. Accompany them with mini muffins, mini bagels with cream cheese and smoked salmon, and fresh berries served in shot glasses and topped with yogurt and honey. And nobody says you need to give up the cocktails. Mimosas, anyone?

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STRAWBERRY CROISSANT SKEWERS

Start to finish: 15 minutes

Makes 12 pieces

2 croissants, each cut into 12 cubes

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6 strawberries, halved

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4 ounces edam or other semi-soft cheese, cut into 12 pieces

———

Honey

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Ground black pepper

On small skewers, thread a piece of croissant, followed by a strawberry half, a piece of cheese, then a second piece of croissant. Drizzle lightly with honey and sprinkle with black pepper.

Nutrition information per serving: 80 calories; 40 calories from fat (50 percent of total calories); 4.5 g fat (3 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 15 mg cholesterol; 7 g carbohydrate; 0 g fiber; 3 g sugar; 3 g protein; 160 mg sodium.

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SMOKED SCHMEARED POTATOES

Start to finish: 30 minutes (10 minutes active)

Makes 12 pieces

2 medium red potatoes

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Olive oil

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Salt and ground black pepper

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1/4 cup garlic-herb cheese spread, such as Boursin

———

Half an 8-ounce package smoked trout

Heat the oven to 400 F.

Slice each potato into six half-inch-thick slabs. Brush the potato slices with olive oil on both sides. Season with salt and pepper. Arrange the slices on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until tender. Allow to cool. Spread a bit of the cheese onto each potato slice, then top with a piece of the smoked trout.

Nutrition information per serving: 70 calories; 30 calories from fat (43 percent of total calories); 3 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 10 mg cholesterol; 6 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 4 g protein; 75 mg sodium.

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CHORIZO HASH-STUFFED MUSHROOM CAPS

Start to finish: 30 minutes (15 minutes active)

Makes 12 pieces

12 cremini mushroom caps

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Salt and ground black pepper

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1 teaspoon olive oil

———

1/2 small yellow onion, chopped

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1 link (about 4 ounces) fresh chorizo sausage, casing removed, crumbled

———

1 small potato, grated

———

2 tablespoons water

———

1/4 cup grated manchego cheese

Heat the oven to 400 F.

Arrange the mushroom caps, open end up, on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then roast for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium skillet over medium-high, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and chorizo and saute until browned, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the potato and water, then cook for another 3 to 4 minutes. When the mushrooms are roasted, spoon the sausage mixture into the caps and sprinkle with the cheese. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Nutrition information per serving: 50 calories; 25 calories from fat (50 percent of total calories); 3 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 5 mg cholesterol; 4 g carbohydrate; 0 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 3 g protein; 150 mg sodium.

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STUFFED BABY BELL PEPPERS

Start to finish: 15 minutes

Makes 12 pieces

6 baby bell peppers

———

2 ounces cream cheese, softened

———

1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar

———

1/2 cup ham, finely chopped

———

1/4 teaspoon smoked sweet paprika

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2 tablespoons chopped scallions

Cut the tops off the peppers, then slice them in half top to bottom. Remove and discard any seeds and ribs from the halves.

In a medium bowl, mix together the cream cheese, cheddar, ham, paprika and scallions. Spoon a bit of the mixture into each pepper half.

Nutrition information per serving: 45 calories; 30 calories from fat (67 percent of total calories); 3.5 g fat (2 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 10 mg cholesterol; 1 g carbohydrate; 0 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 2 g protein; 90 mg sodium.

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(Alison Ladman is a recipe developer for the Associated Press. Follow her on Twitter at https://twitter.com/CrustAndCrumbCo .)



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