Rose’s Recipe’s Dec 18

Rose’s Recipe’s When I have guests for dinner I always have a hard time in making the decision ‘to have’ or ‘not to have’ appetizers. The main reason being how much food can you eat after you have had appetizers and you still need to eat a full course dinner and dessert. So then the reasoning starts all over again but this time it is to find a recipe for a quick, light and just one appetizer.

 

Goat Cheese Spread with Herbs and Olive Oil
This is quick and easy. I always add extra fresh herbs. Serve with some fancy crackers and white wine.
8 oz. goat cheese (about 1 cup)
2 Tbsp heavy cream; more if needed
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, more for drizzling
2 Tbsp dry white wine
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp chopped fresh herbs (choose at least two from the following: parsley, chives, tarragon, dill)
1 Tbsp finely grated lemon zest
Fancy crackers
 
In a food processor, combine the goat cheese, cream, olive oil, and wine; pulse just to blend (or mix in a bowl with a wooden spoon). The mixture should be spreadable; if it’s too thick, add another 1 or 2 Tbs. cream and pulse again. Season with salt and pepper, pulse, and taste, adjusting the seasonings as necessary. Reserve 1 tsp. of the herbs for sprinkling, add the rest to the processor. Add 2 tsp. of the lemon zest. Pulse once more to blend.
Line a small round bowl with a sheet of plastic wrap and fill with the cheese mixture. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes and up to 24 hours.
To serve, invert the bowl onto a serving platter and peel off the plastic. With the back of a spoon, level off the cheese and make a small depression. Drizzle olive oil over the top. Sprinkle with the reserved herbs and lemon zest. Serve with the crackers.

 

Country Ham Relish
Served on crackers, endive leaves, or celery ribs, this sweet and salty relish makes an irresistible appetizer. It’s also a delicious sandwich spread- try it on buttered whole wheat toast topped with sliced tomato and romaine lettuce leaves.
8 oz. country ham, trimmed of most fat and diced (about 11/2 cups)
1/2 cup golden raisins
4 oz. cream cheese, softened and cut into 2 pieces
3 Tbsp mayonnaise or sour cream; more as needed
3 Tbsp sweet pickle relish
Freshly ground black pepper
 
Scatter half of the ham in a layer in a food processor fitted with the metal blade, followed by half of the golden raisins. Repeat the layers with the remaining ham and raisins, and pulse until very few golden raisins remain whole, about 15, two-second pulses.
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and dollop the cream cheese, mayonnaise, and pickle relish evenly over the top. With a silicone spatula, blend the mixture until it’s combined well and spreadable. Adjust the texture with more mayonnaise, if desired, and season to taste with black pepper. The relish can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to 5 days.