M'lady Peggy made a type of hors d'oeuvre whose origin for her was a commercial wine tasting event. It didn't sound especially good to me (I was in the mood for a meat or seafood hors d'oeuvre) and she didn't have a name for it. She did, however, tell me that they are very good, and she made a few changes/additions relative to what she was served, and WOW, what a fine result. The flavor and texture combination was excellent and quite unexpected by me, and they are very attractive as well. We went through 20 of them in one sitting and I could easily have eaten more. I knew immediately that I needed to make a new appetizer entry in Food Nirvana. Of course, you will likely have to purchase a few of the ingredients on your next trip to the supermarket when you decide to make them.
Peggy had no name for the hors d'oeuvre so I looked at one with a blank mind and figured out a suitable name. They look like colorful little ladies wearing red skirts so I decided to name them Tasty Ladies. If you've had anything similar before you will probably know them by a different name.
These delicious hors d'oeuvres are rather easy to make. They consist of five items skewered on a colored cocktail toothpick and stood on end as a group on a cocktail or small serving plate. The challenge is to find the perfect ingredients so I have indicated in the ingredients list below the brands of tomatoes, cheese and garlic that Peggy used. You can, of course, substitute other products, including what you can make at home.
20 colored cocktail toothpicks
20 green manzanilla pimento stuffed olives (though you might also try a variety of additional small pitted olives for variety, like black or kalamata olives)
10 small salad tomatoes (Peggy used very expensive hothouse grown small tomatoes from Canada that are genuinely ripe and sweet and are not supposed to be refrigerated, simply washed first when used. The brand name is Sunset Angel Sweet®.)
20 cloves of garlic from bottled garlic and spices in water (Pampa® brand) or use the Food Nirvana recipe in Processed Vegetables to make marinated garlic and save a lot of money
10 small mozzarella cheese balls marinated in oil and herbs and spices (Formaggio® brand)
10 small leaves of fresh basil
Directions: (reverse the order of ingredient assembly if you use parasol top or other decorative top cocktail toothpicks)
Cut the tomatoes in half, cross-wise. Do the same for the cheese balls. Cut the basil leaves in half the same way.
Skewer each tomato piece with a toothpick such that the flat part of the tomato is at the bottom when the toothpicks are placed on a cocktail plate vertically.
Push a piece of basil onto each toothpick until it is touching the tomato on the top.
Skewer a piece of the cheese on each toothpick and push it down to the basil.
Skewer each clove of garlic, sideways, and push it down the toothpick to the cheese.
Skewer an olive sideways on each toothpick and push it down to touch the garlic.
If necessary, chill the Tasty Ladies for a few hours, covered with plastic wrap, before serving them to your guests.
Serve them and be prepared for applause.