Bring these colorful, bite-sized appetizers to your holiday parties. You can keep the fact that they are healthy a secret!
These appetizers contain 5 foods associated with better blood sugar: nuts, garlic, olive oil, cheese and tomatoes.
This delicious and attractive appetizer is simple to prepare. You can make the creamy pesto filling ahead of time (keep it, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days), but wait until shortly before serving to stuff the tomatoes.
- 3 cups fresh basil leaves, washed and dried
- 2 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoins pine nuts, toasted (see tip below)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 package (8 ounces) reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), cut into chunks
- 2 pints (4 cups) cherry tomatoes, washed and dried
How to make it 35 minutes
Combine the basil, garlic, salt and pepper in a food processor. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the pine nuts and add the rest to the basil. Process until the pine nuts are ground. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil. Add the soft cheese and pulse until smooth and creamy.
Shortly before serving, make an X on the bottom side (opposite the stalk) of each cherry tomato with a serrated or sharp paring knife. Scoop out the seeds with a grapefruit spoon or your fingertips, taking care to keep the tomatoes intact.
Scrape the pesto cheese filling into a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle, or small plastic food bag with a 1cm hole snipped in one corner. Pipe a rosette of filling into each cherry tomato cavity. Garnish the cherry tomatoes with the remaining pine nuts. One serving is about three filled cherry tomatoes. Serves 16.
Nutritional Information(per serving)
- Calories: 64
- Fat: 5g
- Saturated Fat: 1.5
- Cholesterol: 8mg
Healthy Cooking Tip
Toast pine nuts in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until light golden and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and let cool.