Looking for an impressive, warm appetizer to serve to friends or family? This is a great appetizer if served in moderation, as it is rich, delicious and packed with flavor. You can make it with any small shellfish like crayfish, langostino, or salad shrimp. Anticipate 2-3 per person with cocktails or pre-dinner wine. If hosting a larger party have two other types of less luxurious appetizer toasts along side these.
(makes about one cup)
1 tablespoon butter
6 green onions (scallions), white parts only, finely chopped
1/2 small red bell pepper, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon Old Bay Seafood seasoning or similar spice
Dash of cayenne pepper
6 ounces shellfish (crayfish, langostino or salad shrimp), precooked
1/8 teaspoon of Tabasco or other hot sauce (to taste)
Fresh ground pepper, to taste
(additional salt only if needed, taste carefully)
6 green onion (scallions), top green parts, finely sliced for garnish
Crunchy garlic bread appetizer toasts, fresh or store bought
Prepare the above ingredients. Cut larger pieces of shellfish in half. In a medium skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and bell pepper and cook until softened about 5 minutes. Add garlic and stir continuously for about a minute until the garlic is softened and has released its flavor.
Stir in the cream cheese, mayonnaise, seasonings and whisk until smooth. Reduce heat to low and add the shellfish, stirring regularly until the shellfish is heated through (about 5 minutes). Do not overcook or the shellfish will become tough as it has been previously cooked. Taste and correct seasoning if necessary.
Serve immediately on garlic toasts garnished with the green parts of the scallions.