When choosing a hot appetizer, you'll want to consider the number of guests, your budget and the other foods to be served at the meal or event. You will also want to consider the dietary requirements of your guests. It is particularly important to decide whether the hot appetizer will be served as part of a sit-down meal, a self-service buffet or passed around on an appetizer platter. Once you make decisions about the types of food to be served, as well as the way in which you plan to serve it, you'll be in a better position to start searching online to find resources for hot appetizer recipes.
Your first consideration when choosing a hot appetizer should be what kind of menu you have planned for a meal. Ideally, your hot appetizer should not duplicate foods that will be served as a main course or side dish. The appetizer should also not be so large so as to extinguish the appetites of your guests or fellow diners. On the other hand, if you are planning a party meal, you may wish to serve a buffet made up entirely of hot and cold finger foods. In such cases, you will want to make sure that you have a variety of appetizer foods available to your guests, particularly if you know that some guests have food allergies, are vegetarian or vegan or have other dietary restrictions.
If you are unaccustomed to preparing multi-course meals, you may wish to choose a hot appetizer that can be made ahead of time and then plated at the time it is served. If you are making small hors d'oeuvre-style appetizers for a party, select some recipes that can be prepared in advance and then frozen. This will allow you to prepare some of your appetizers several days ahead of your party, reducing your workload on the day of the event.
Be considerate in your choice of hot appetizers. If you will be hosting a formal event, avoid hot appetizers that can drip onto formal clothing or that must be eaten with the fingers. Instead, choose a hot appetizer that can be consumed with a fork, or that can be skewered with a toothpick or fork if served as a cocktail buffet. Less formal events, on the other hand, can merit slightly “messier” appetizers such as chicken wings, but it is always a good idea to have plenty of napkins on hand for your guests to use.