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Make mealtime a-mezze-ing

What's for dinner?

If you’re running out of answers (and inspiration) to this age-old question, here’s an idea. Mezze (also spelled meze) is a selection of small dishes inspired by Mediterranean and Middle Eastern countries. The concept is similar to the tapas of Spain, but with different dishes and ingredients.

With mezze, you can please nearly every palate, including vegetarians, gluten avoiders and picky eaters. The best part? You can buy many of the items pre-made. Or, if you prefer, you can make the items ahead of time. Just pull it all out of the refrigerator and assemble a few minutes before your meal.

How to make a mezze platter

  1. Vegetables. The sky is the limit. Try tomatoes, bell peppers, artichokes, cucumbers, sun-dried tomatoes, roasted zucchini and pickled or roasted peppers.
  2. Dips. The most popular are tzatziki and hummus. You can purchase them pre-made at the grocery store or make them yourself.
  3. Cheese and meats. Mozzarella, feta and goat cheese are good choices. Prosciutto and salami are welcome additions for meat-lovers.
  4. Olives, grapes, figs or berries. Try all different types if you'd like.
  5. Breads. Serve with toasted, grilled or baked 100 percent whole-wheat pita bread, brushed with olive oil. Or, try a selection of 100 percent whole-wheat crackers.

If you have time, serve with a traditional Mediterranean salad such as tabbouleh or fattoush. Or, try this recipe for chickpea, parsley and feta salad.