Previously, I had made this dish with black beans and corn off the cob in the summer. Wanting to try it with fresh fall ingredients, I replaced the corn with roasted pumpkin—yum! It's also good with butternut squash. —Lesle Harwood, Douglassville, Pennsylvania
Meet the Cook: Since you can chop up all the ingredients the night before, this can be ready in about 30 minutes. So it's a great after-work dinner. You can also serve it as a snack or an appetizer...similar to chicken nuggets. I've even substituted quail for the chicken, and it was delicious. Next, I may try it with pork!
-Kari Caven, Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Meet the Cook: The idea for my recipe started with a food demonstration I didn't like. That version used things most people don't have on hand. So I decided to experiment, and out came Taco Tater Skins.
We - my husband and I have a girl, 7, and a boy, 4 - make a meal out of these skins. But they're also great for parties as appetizers. (Have the recipe handy...you'll be asked for a copy!)
-Phyllis Douglas, Fairview, Michigan
My husband was in the Air Force so we've entertained guests in many parts of the world. I acquired this recipe while in California. It's one of my favorite special appetizers.
—Sandra J. Twait, Tampa, Florida
Over the many years I've been cooking, I've had my share of flops, but these well-seasoned chicken wings have never failed my. Crisp and cheesy, they're outstanding as an appetizer and always draws a crowd.
Be prepared—you'll likely need to make a double batch of Kathy Beldorth's delightful dip. "One is never enough when we have a get-together," she details from Three Oaks, Michigan. "It tastes great with just about any vegetable , so you can use whatever you have on hand as dippers."
"I first tasted this warm, well-flavored dip at our daughter's house—and immediately asked for the recipe," relates Ramona Larson, a homemaker from Andover, Minnesota. Since then, she's served it herself at family gatherings. "Everyone who tries it comes back for more," she reports. If you'd like, you can place the dip in a hollowed-out-artichoke, just like our kitchen crafters did. Or keep it in the dish you bake it in—either way, it'll heat up any setting.
For Nancy Citro, providing her popular appetizer for get-togethers has become a necessity. She pens from Cape Coral, Florida, "Friends joke that they won't go to parties unless I bring my dip. And I've lost count of how many times I've written down the recipe for people! Nancy likes to serve her snack with extra bread for dipping.—Nancy Citro, Cape Coral, Florida
Every January, we host a family get-together to watch "the big game" on TV. I'm not much of a football fan, but I do enjoy that annual opportunity to try out new recipes. These tasty finger sandwiches scored a "touchdown" with everyone who tried them!
If you don't want to miss a play, you can prepare this appetizer ahead and heat it up at halftime.
My take on deviled eggs is full of surprises. The down-home appetizer Mom used to make gets an upscale touch from mango, goat cheese and pecans. People love these tempting treats.—Beth Satterfield, Dover, Delaware