Meet the Cook: Needing a quick appetizer one night when dinner was running late, I combined a few leftovers into this easy cheese ball. For variety, you can shape it into a log, or substitute favorite herbs for the pepper. My husband and I are the proud parents of two children, Kenton, 6, and Katie, 4.
-Tamara Rickard, Bartlett, Tennessee
"I’m a stay-at-home mother with two boys and I enjoy cooking—especially appetizers," shares Tracy Schuhmacher from Penfield, New York. "It must run in the family because my mom served appetizers and desserts exclusively for several Christmas Eve celebrations. Brie is one of my favorite cheeses and this sweet-savory recipe is party-special but especially easy to throw together."
This four-ingredient caramel dip is so simple and yummy. People always want to know how long I slaved over the stove to prepare it and are amazed to find that I made it in the microwave. When large marshmallows aren’t on hand, I substitute 2 cups of mini marshmallows instead. –Becky Heiner, West Valley City, Utah
These easy shrimp look impressive on a buffet table and taste even better! The zesty sauce has a wonderful spicy citrus flavor. I especially like this recipe because I can prepare it ahead of time. —Mary Jane Guest, Alamosa, Colorado
I used reduced-fat items to lighten up this Parmesan and bacon dip. Not only it is a snap to mix up the night before a party, but the proportions can easily by adjusted for smaller or larger groups. I get requests for the recipe whenever I serve it. —Pam Garwood, Lakeville, Minnesota
Every time I make this quick dip, someone asks for the recipe. It only requires a few items, so its a snap to put together. I often prepare the thick spread with Gorgonzola cheese and serve it with toasted pecans.
I decided to try this recipe on my card club, and it was a big success. They loved it. The recipe can be swapped around and changed in so many different ways and always turns out as an awesome appetizer or great-looking centerpiece over a hand of cards.