Fig and Cream Cheese Won Tons

We took cooking lessons from our friend Dan Pettis some years ago in Shalimar.  What a creative Chef he is, and he has gone on from his early work with Tim Creehan to operating his own successful restaurants in the Florida panhandle with Bistro One20 his flagship in Niceville.  This appetizer is original to Dan and one you will want to file for the future.

  • Two dozen won ton wrappers
  • 3 egg yolks, beaten
  • 1 pound of cream cheese
  • 1/2 pound of dried figs
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 2 cups of Japanese plum wine
  • 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar
  • Canola oil for frying

Process the cream cheese, figs, and honey until figs are chopped and incorporated.  Put 1/2 of a teaspoon of the mixture on each won ton wrapper, brush with the egg yolks, and fold into a triangle first, then fold in the outside points making a bishop’s hat.  Combine the wine and vinegar and reduce to a syrup.  Fry won tons in canola oil at 375 degrees until crispy and serve with the glaze spooned over.

Stuffed Lychee Nuts

lg211769988A refreshing taste with the most dominant notes of Asian cuisine: the bite and tartness of ginger, the sweetness of lychees, and soy’s saltiness, combined with the comfort of western cream cheese.

1 eight ounce block of cream cheese

1 and ½ tablespoons of Soy sauce

4 tablespoons of minced, candied ginger

1 large can of lychee nuts, well-drained

Cream first three ingredients together and generously pipe into each lychee nut. Chill and serve.

Country Sausage in Lemon Pineapple Sauce

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Quick, delicious, and always appreciated. We prefer a Conecuh smoked sausage but a polish kielbasa will do for those unfortunates who cannot find the real thing in their local supermarket.

  • 2 pounds of smoked country sausage
  • 1 box of light brown sugar
  • Juice and zest of one lemon
  • 1 can of crushed pineapple, drained

Slice sausage into bite-size pieces and place in a crock pot with the brown sugar, lemon, and pineapple for an hour on high. Remove to a shallow stoneware serving dish and serve with picks.

An Apple Ball for Kids of All Ages

two apples

 

Need something sweet for a favorite child’s

birthday party? We copped a taste of this and

found it appeals to folks of all ages. Just make

sure you share with the other kids!

8 ounces of cream cheese

¼ cup of brown sugar

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1 teaspoon of apple pie spice

2 apples, peeled, cored, and minced

Mix all the ingredients well, roll into a ball,

and chill on waxed paper for an hour or so.

Before serving, coat with chopped peanuts

that have been tossed with a tablespoon of

brown sugar and a half teaspoon of ground

cinnamon. Serve as a spread with animal

crackers!

Bacon-Wrapped Prunes with Almonds

We all agree that almost anything wrapped in

bacon is a winner but this combination of dried

plums, crunchy almonds, and smoked bacon is

a singular sensation. The spike of black pepper,

tart vinegar, and a hint of sugar brings all the

flavors together.

1 cup of seeded dried prunes

½ cup of red wine vinegar

½ cup water

1 tablespoon of brown sugar

10 black peppercorns

1 teaspoon of fresh rosemary leaves

2 cloves

½ cup of smoked almonds

Smoked bacon slices

Simmer all ingredients, except for the almonds,

for five minutes, drain well and cut each prune

in half and stuff with an almond. Wrap with a

half-slice of bacon and bake, seam-side down,

in a 350 degree oven for thirty minutes.

Watermelon Salsa

We love watermelon in all of its forms, but yellow

watermelons seem slightly sweeter, and add so much

color to this salsa. Make a lot more than you think

you’ll need.

2 cups of yellow watermelon, cubed

2 cups of coarsely chopped roma tomatoes

1/4 cup of cilantro, chopped

½ cup of red onion, chopped

½ cup of green onions, sliced

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tablespoon of lime juice, freshly squeezed

1 teaspoon of lime zest

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 teaspoon of oregano

1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar

3 tablespoons of olive oil

Combine ingredients and refrigerate for at least

an hour before serving with your favorite tortilla

scoops.

Stuffed Roquefort Figs

I have prepared this hors d’oeuvres with several

combinations of nuts and both dried and fresh figs.

If you have difficulty finding fresh figs, you may

purchase the dried figs and soak them overnight in

orange juice or red wine before halving them. Try

rolling the figs in powdered sugar or sprinkling

with grated chocolate. All good! This version is my

favorite.

1 dozen fresh figs, stemmed and halved

1/2 cup of cream cheese

1/2 cup of Roquefort cheese

24 pecan halves, toasted and salted

balsamic vinegar

Stir cheeses together and make an indention in

each fig with a teaspoon. Fill with the cheese and

top each with half a pecan. Drizzle with balsamic

vinegar, and serve.

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