I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter and are enjoying their Spring break!
In the past few weeks, the Shamrock and Peach adventures have taking me to Buckhead and Roswell to teach at a gourmet Olive and Vinegar store so aptly called ‘Oli and Ve’ and as those classes and recipies are fresh in the mind I thought it might be good for this months theme to be centered around some really delicious party appetizers that incorporate the wonderful oils and vinegars that hail from around the world – all with my very own Irish and Southern twist added in, or course!
This is a version of a recipe shared by a friend many years ago at party we were both at, and like all recipes we adapt and make it our own – which I’m sure is true for you as well. My twist is that I have added a smidge of goats cheese to the original cream cheese recipe for the added tang, some fresh herbs and our gourmet flavored olive oils and vinegar to really make the flavors shine.
Oh, and my Southern friend, Karen suggested that I add some toasted pecans instead of the walnuts or pine nuts for crunch…so, there you are!
This recipe only gets better over time as the flavors marinade, so have fun in the kitchen and as I always say -have some joy the journey!
2 oz pecans or walnuts (toasted)
4 oz cream cheese
4 oz goats cheese
1 cup mission figs
1/2 cup water
2/3 cup kalamata olives (chopped)
2 Tbsp fig infused balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp fresh rosemary (chopped plus a spring to garnish)
1 Tbsp fresh thyme (chopped) and a dash of hot sauce
(how to make it)
Combine the softened cream cheese and goats cheese. ( I use an ice cream scoop to form a ball). Soften the figs by adding water and reducing the liquid and cool. Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse gently. Spoon mixture over goats cheese ball. Top with toasted nuts and garnish with a spring of fresh rosemary.
Judie the Irish foodie