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Below are the recipes presented by Laura Fine of Laura Fine Desserts at the 2014 Spring Conference in a class called Easy, Delicious Appetizers. Enjoy!

Easy, Delicious Appetizers

Baguettes with Chevre and Honey Walnut Spread

  • 2 c. walnuts
  • ¾ c. honey
  • ¾ c. dried pears or apples, small dice
  • 2 tsp. herbes de provence
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 2 T. orange zest, finely grated
  • 1 T. orange juice
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • French bread or any bread you like
  1. Chop walnuts medium to fine dice. Place in bowl and add all ingredients except goat cheese and bread. Beat vigorously until completely mixed.
  2. Slice baguette and spread with goat cheese. Broil just until cheese warms. Top with spread.
  3. Note: This makes about 1½ cups, and stores indefinitely in fridge.

Parmesan Dip

  • ½ lb good quality parmesan cheese
  • ½ lb Asiago cheese
  • 2 T. green onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 to 1½ c. extra virgin olive oil
  1. Remove any rind from cheese and chop into 1-inch cubes. Pulse in food processor until reduced to pea-sized gravel. Add green onion, garlic, oregano, black pepper and red pepper and pulse. Add olive oil and blend shortly. You do not want a puree.
  2. Pour into glass jars. It will last indefinitely in refrigerator. Before serving, let stand at room temperature for at least 4 hours. Serve with chunks of hearty bread, either fresh or toasted. Also excellent on pasta and vegetables or as a garnish for soup.

Belgian Endive Boats

These are delicious and fun to eat.

  • 4 Belgian endive (each will have about 6-7 useable leaves)
  • 1/3 cup sugared walnuts, chopped (see recipe below)
  • 1/3 cup blue cheese, crumbled
  • ½ each large red and yellow pepper, cored and finely diced
  • 2 cups prewashed mixed greens, finely chopped
  • Olive oil to drizzle
  • Balsamic vinegar to drizzle
  1. Separate, wash and dry endive. Arrange on flat platter. Sprinkle walnuts into each endive boat. Top with blue cheese, diced peppers and greens. Mix olive oil and balsamic and drizzle over all.

Sugared Walnuts

  • ¾ c. walnuts
  • ¼ c. brown sugar
  1. Line small sheet pan with foil or parchment paper.
  2. In small sauté pan stir together walnuts and brown sugar. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes until sugar melts and walnuts are coated, stirring regularly. Do not burn sugar. Spread out onto foil and separate into small clumps. Cool 5 minutes. Chop into small chunks for salad.

Phyllo Tartlets

  • Athens mini phyllo tartlets (Ingles, frozen section)
  • Favorite combinations:
    • Brie, chutney, almonds
    • Chevre, pesto, minced sundried tomatoes
    • Very ripe pear, bleu cheese, walnuts
    • Ricotta, butternut squash, sage
    • Artichoke, black olive, feta
    • Smoked trout, mustard sauce, pickle
    • Ham, pineapple, cheddar
    • Corned beef, Swiss cheese, 1000 island dressing
  1. Finely dice ingredients and layer into tartlets. Bake in 350 degree oven for about 8 minutes.
Jenn Cloke

Author: Jenn Cloke

Jenn Cloke, originally from Atlanta, has lived in Western North Carolina for since 2006 and wears her Appalachian mantle proudly. Jenn was the Communications Coordinator for Organic Growers School from 2012 to 2014. She and her family run a small farm at the foot of Cold Mountain.

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