Hors d’oeuvres are appetizers served before a more substantial meal. These morsels are often finger foods meant to stave off hunger and make you excited for what is to come. Here is an introduction to the history of these beloved, savory snacks.


During the late 18th century, French people created thin slices of bread topped with meat and cheeses. They called them canapés, which means “sofa,” and referred to the way the toppings sit on the bread like pillows.

Through the years, the term enveloped all types of finger foods, and was frequently interchanged with hors d’oeuvres, or “outside the works.” Around 1850, this name referred to both hot and cold smaller dishes that flanked larger meals on the tables of wealthy people—and was a tradition practiced throughout Europe.


appetizersDuring Prohibition in 1920 in the United States, alcohol was illegal. Citizens brought their drinking establishments below ground to illicit bars known as speakeasies, which were often hidden behind false walls or in basements. There, some served appetizers to prevent visitors from appearing drunk when they left the establishments.

Finger sandwiches provided enough food to limit the effects of the alcohol in these illegal bars and at home cocktail parties. Plus, the appetizers didn’t require a full kitchen or expensive ingredients, making them easier to create and lowering the cost to the customers and barkeeps. 


Many people enjoy pregame appetizers like chicken wings, veggies, and dip. Gatherings with kids often include small plates of mac and cheese or pigs in a blanket (hot dogs wrapped in dough). 

When planning formal events, high-end appetizers like charcuterie boards with local cheeses and meats are a top option. Hummus, crostinis, phyllo dough bites, and skewers are all popular for business gatherings and larger affairs like weddings.


If you want tasty appetizers at your next event, contact Silver Spoons Catering in Douglas County, CO. The family-owned and -operated company provides food for businesses, weddings, and conferences. Call the Lone Tree-area catering team at (303) 335-0765 to discuss your needs. Visit the website for information on their delicious offerings, all of which can be customized to suit your guests’ dietary needs.