So lesson learned from my Father’s Day BBQ. Yours truly did not have anything to snack on. My father made that observation and let me know it the whole day. So don’t have your guest waiting while you finish glazing some glossy bark on your ribs. Here are a few BBQ appetizers ideas and recipes that will keep your guest’s or in my case my dad’s attention off your grill and on their plates.

Tomato Mozzarella Salad (Caprese)

1  large beefsteak tomato, sliced
1/8  teaspoon salt
2 1/2  oz. (4 slices) fresh mozzarella cheese
1  teaspoon olive oil or vegetable oil
1  tablespoon torn fresh basil leaves
1/4  teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
Sprinkle tomato slices with salt. Arrange on serving platter, overlapping tomato and cheese slices. Drizzle with oil; sprinkle with basil and pepper.

Bacon Wrapped Shrimp

2  tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/2  teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
1 clove crushed garlic
12  fresh uncooked jumbo shrimp (1/2 lb), shelled with tails left on, deveined
12  slices bacon, halved
2 tablespoons olive oil
Heat gas or charcoal grill or preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a large resealable food-storage plastic bag, mix lime juice, olive oil, ground red pepper and garlic. Add shrimp; stir or turn bag to coat. Seal bag; let stand at room temperature to marinate while cooking bacon.
Meanwhile, in 10-inch skillet, cook bacon over medium heat 4 to 5 minutes, turning once, until lightly browned but not crisp (bacon needs to be pliable to wrap around seafood). Drain on paper towels.
Drain shrimp. Reserve marinade. Wrap 2 pieces of bacon around each shrimp, secure with toothpick if baking in oven. Skewer shrimp on metal skewers or place wrapped shrimps on foil lined baking sheet.
When grill is heated, place kabobs on gas grill over medium heat or on charcoal grill over medium coals; brush with marinade, cover grill. Cook 4 to 7 minutes, turning once, until shrimp turn pink. If baking in oven, brush with marinade, bake for 10-12 minutes making sure shrimp is pink and bacon crisp.

Lasagna Cupcakes

1 cup marinara sauce
3/4 pound ground beef
2 teaspoons dried oragano
12 wonton wrappers
8 ounces shredded mozzarella
3 ounces Parmesan cheese
4 ounces Ricotta cheese
basil leaf for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray.
Brown beef and season with salt, pepper and oregano. Drain.
Reserve 6 tablespoons Parmesan cheese and 6 tablespoon mozzarella for the top of you cupcakes. Start layering your lasagna cupcakes. Begin with a wonton wrapper and press it into the bottom of each muffin tin. Sprinkle a little Parmesan cheese, Ricotta cheese, and mozzarella cheese. Top with a little meat and marinara sauce. Use around 1-2 teaspoons of all the ingredients depending on your personal preference.
Repeat layers ending with marinara sauce. Top with reserved Parmesan and mozzarella cheese.
Bake for 18-20 minutes or until edges are brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. To remove use a knife to loosen the edges then pop each lasagna out.
Garnish with basil, serve, and enjoy.


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