Charcuterie plate: Slice a thin dried sausage fairly coarsely, and a fatter dried sausage as thinly as you can and arrange them on a platter with prosciutto or Serrano ham.
Bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with blue cheese: Slice dates open and remove the pits. Stuff with a chunk of good blue cheese. Wrap with a quarter strip of bacon and bake at 350 degrees until the bacon is crisp and the cheese is melted.
Quick-pickled peppers: Cut a slit in each of three-quarters pound of shishito peppers and blanch them briefly in boiling water. Simmer 2 1/2 cups rice vinegar with 2 cups water, some sliced garlic and onions, a couple of teaspoons salt, a tablespoon sugar and whatever whole spices you like. Place the blanched peppers in a sealable container and pour the hot liquid over. Pickle for 1 day before serving.
Cranberry bean salad: Dress cold cooked cranberry beans with lemon juice, olive oil and a fresh herb such as basil.
Smoked trout mousse: Purée smoked trout in a food processor with just enough softened butter to make a silky smooth consistency. Spread on crackers and dot with capers.
Candied walnuts: Stir walnuts in a bowl with just enough corn syrup to lightly coat, a little sugar and some salt and black pepper. Spread on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 325 degrees until toasted and fragrant.
Prosciutto and Fuyu persimmon: Quarter the persimmons and remove the core if it's woody. Thinly slice and wrap with thinly sliced prosciutto or Serrano ham. Spear with a toothpick to hold in place and make serving easier.
Herbed puff pastry sticks: Thaw frozen puff pastry, butter one side and top with chopped fresh herbs. Use a pizza cutter to slice into thin strips, twist them, then bake at 375 degrees until puffed and golden.
Onion sandwiches: Slice red onions as thinly as possible, rinse under hot running water and pat dry. Generously butter thin slices of high-quality white bread and strew with the onions. Top with more generously buttered white bread and cut into serving pieces. This can also be done with radishes.
Date sweetmeats: Slice dates open and remove the pits. Roll a chunk of marzipan or almond paste mixed with a little orange zest into a ball and place it in the date cavity. Press firmly to seal.