Photo: Marcus Nisson

Artichoke-Stuffed Gougères
Gougères are like savory cream puffs—light-as-air pastries that are wonderful on their own, or decadent when stuffed. This recipe incorporates some finely grated Parmesan into the dough, which gives the gougères a subtly salty flavor. The filling is a rich puree of cooked artichoke hearts, fennel, onion, lemon juice, white wine and heavy cream. Put them together and you have an addictive snack your guests will be popping like candy.

Get the recipe: Artichoke-Stuffed Gougères

Photo: Nigel Cox

Parmesan Tartlets with Caesar Salad
Handheld salads in edible cups may sound like something only a caterer could pull off, but making them at home is surprisingly easy. The secret is a mini-muffin pan: You turn it upside down and lay just-baked rounds of grated Parmesan cheese over each upturned cup. As the cheese cools, it molds to the shape of the muffin cup. To serve, toss together finely chopped romaine, small croutons, Caesar salad dressing and shaved Parmesan; then fill each tartlet with a spoonful of the salad.

Get the recipe: Parmesan Tartlets with Caesar Salad

Photo: Eric Wolfinger

Sizzling Shrimp with Garlic and Pimentón
One of the most appealing things about Mediterranean dishes is their simplicity. Take this garlicky shrimp recipe, which is marvelously streamlined: it's shrimp (you can use shell-on or peeled) sautéed in nothing more than olive oil, garlic, red-pepper flakes and Spanish smoked paprika. Serve with toothpicks—and perhaps some crusty bread, in case anyone wants to soak up the rich oil in which the dish is cooked.

Get the recipe: Sizzling Shrimp with Garlic and Pimentón

Photo: Eric Wolfinger

Mushroom Caps Stuffed with Olives and Porcini
If you've forgotten about stuffed mushrooms, allow us to reintroduce you to these tasty treats. They're small but mighty, with a deep flavor that happens to go wonderfully with cocktails. The filling includes Greek green olives; their briny, buttery flavor is a spot-on match for woodsy mushrooms. You can assemble these hors d'oeuvres up to a day ahead of time and reheat them just before serving.

Get the recipe: Mushroom Caps Stuffed with Olives and Porcini

Photo: Valentina Rice

Mini Sausage Rolls
We'll never pass up a pig in a blanket, but these slightly more sophisticated bites are a less expected way to enjoy the deliciousness that is savory meat wrapped in dough and baked until golden. In this version (a twist on a British classic), the "pig" is sausage mixed with sage and chili; and, the "blanket" is all-butter puff pastry. The result is a bite-size appetizer that's guaranteed to be a massive hit.

Get the recipe: Mini Sausage Rolls