Apple Sage Pork Ribs
Apple Sage Pork Ribs

These Apple Sage Pork Ribs capitalize on the way that apple always pairs well with pork, and the way that sage always works well with apple. Two or three plated together make a delicious, and very attractive appetizer serving (which is how they are presented here), but you can also make a larger batch and serve them with a couple of sides to make a hearty main course too…


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Spicy Salmon Bites
Spicy Salmon Bites

These Spicy Turmeric Salmon Bites feature morsels of Salmon fillet crisp-fried in a spicy coating. The flavoring is vaguely Indian in spirit, but you could use this delicious little appetizer as first course for any type of meal…


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Stuffed Peppers with Black Bean Sauce
Stuffed Peppers with Black Bean Sauce

This appetizer of Stuffed Peppers with Black Bean Sauce features pieces of different colored bell peppers stuffed with a seasoned mixture of shrimp and pork, then fried briefly before being finished in a sauce containing oyster sauce, rice wine and Chinese Salted Black Beans. It can, depending on the portion size, be served as a dim sum offering, a more substantial appetizer, or a side dish as art of a Chinese meal…


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Keto-Friendly Cucumber Gunboats
Keto-Friendly Cucumber Gunboats

These Keto-Friendly Cucumber Gunboats are my own creation make a great low-carb alternative to the Japanese sushi specialty known as ‘Gunkan Maki’ in Japanese, or ‘Battleship’ Sushi in English.

 For those who haven’t experienced it yet, Battleship Sushi is very much like Nigiri sushi in that it is a topping on top of an oblong pad of sushi rice. In the ‘Gunkan’ case, however, the topping is ‘loose’ rather than a single solid piece, and it is held in place with a collar of Nori wrapped around the rice. The ‘Battleship’ name, comes, of course, from the rather boat-like appearance of each piece.

The fillings I used for this post (shown from left to right in the above picture) are Shrimp Salad, Egg Salad, and a preparation of Smoked Salmon Strips in a light dressing of oil and lemon juice. Practical considerations made it preferable to make ‘rounds’ rather than rectangles, but the ‘Gunboat’ name still works, I think…


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Smoked Salmon Maki
Smoked Salmon Maki

This Smoked Salmon Maki appetizer was inspired by a drive to create some rice-less ‘sushi’ type preparations for those following low-carb diets, or even doing the whole ‘Keto’ thing. These Maki, or rolls, use thin slices of Smoked Salmon to wrap nori sheets, egg-salad made with Japanese Mayonnaise, and strips of red bell pepper.


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Lemon Stuffed Olives
Lemon Stuffed Olives

These Lemon-Stuffed Olives were inspired by an appetizer I once had served to me in a Greek restaurant. Like many recipes for lemon stuffed olives, the ones I had on that occasion used the zest for the stuffing and were served in a simple herbed-olive oil. Here, I substitute the flesh of the lemon for the zest, and include a little white wine in the marinade.


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Simmered Enoki Mushrooms
Simmered Enoki Mushrooms

There are many ways to prepare Simmered Enoki Mushrooms. The recipe here is derived from the basic Japanese traditional method for making this dish, but it adds a few twists. Chinese Rice Wine replaces the more common Mirin, and butter replaces the more common cooking oil for a nice depth of flavor and richness…


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Spicy Fried Baby Octopus
Spicy Fried Baby Octopus

This little appetizer dish of Spicy Fried Baby Octopus incorporates chili, cumin, and a little thyme into the deep-fry coating of cornstarch. When jazzed up this way, the tender morsels require no additional condiments at the table other than just a wee squeeze of lemon.

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