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Mini Phyllo Shells Make Terrific Buffet Starters and Dessert Treats

The minis are fun to make and to eat - fill these tiny phyllo shells with starter foods or cap off a party with dessert-filled treats

Mini phyllo shells have been around for years, but they're still very popular for buffets. Many stores carry frozen prepared quiches and tartlets, but it is more fun to make your own when there's time and you want to add pizzazz to a party.

It's proven that mini-foods are more endearing - for some reason guests will pop a mini in their mouths, but may overlook larger portions of foods. Regular-sized appetizers make people feel as if they're over-indulging, while the smaller bites encourage multiple samplings.

Mini-phyllo shells have very little fat, no cholesterol, and are just 4 carbohydrates per two shells. This makes it easy to treat your friends to healthy options as well as add indulgences for those who are not watching their waistlines.

Another advantage to incorporating mini-phyllo shells into the buffet mix is their flexibility. You can serve them hot and filled with any type of food - regional, ethnic, seasonal, etc. Serve them are starters, also, with cold cuts and cheese. Even better, they can be served at the end of a gathering as dessert treats. There really is no limit as to the choice of filling and garnishes.

Minis make a more colorful and elegant presentation as well. Rows of tiny shells with a range of toppings - from cheese curls to sprinkles - are simply enticing in any type of buffet arrangement.

They're easy to eat and less messy encased in the shells. Note that for some recipes, you'll want to bake the shell first for crispness. Recipes with contents that require extensive cooking can be baked in the shell or cooked first and then heated in the shells.

Some minis can also be made ahead of time and frozen. Just pop in the oven, bake, and serve!


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