The holiday season is definitely upon us. How many parties have you attended so far? I swear this December has been the busiest December of my life. I’ve had parties/events/friend meet-ups almost every night. Busy bee.
This past Saturday my husband and I had yet another holiday/ugly sweater party to attend. This of course gives me the excuse to whip something up that I normally would not like hanging around my house, like a new cookie recipe or a party-sized appetizer. This recipe is for the latter.
As I mentioned in my sirniki post, tvorog is an extremely common ingredient in Russian cooking. I actually haven’t had it in years (until last week) because I had no idea that farmer’s cheese is such a close (and widely available) substitute. If you’ve never had farmer’s cheese, it’s kind of a cross between whipped cottage cheese and ricotta – it’s smooth and slightly tangy. A bite brings me straight back to childhood. Give it a try!
The garlicky tvorog recipe once again came from the Please To The Table cookbook, but upon tasting it I realized that my mom actually made something extremely similar and filled profiterole-type pastries with this spread (I actually served those guys at my last New Year’s Eve party, if you’re looking for a visual ). This spread is creamy and well, garlicky (ha!) and it could be a fun appetizer for the next holiday party you’re hosting (or going to). I made a double batch for the party on Saturday and it was gone by the end of the night!
Here is how you do it…
Ingredients (makes a party-sized batch)
- 16oz farmer’s cheese
- 1/3 cup walnuts, finely chopped (optional)
- 1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt
- 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 2T of fresh dill
- 2t dried parsley (or 2T of fresh)
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1. Process cheese, finely chopped walnuts (if using) and yogurt in the food processor until creamy.
2. Transfer to a small bowl. Mix in minced garlic, herbs and salt and pepper, to taste.
4. Refrigerate for 4 hours (it will slightly harden and hold it shape better).
5. Flip into a serving platter.
6. Coat with coarsely chopped walnuts.
Serve with pita chips. It’ party time!
Note: I couldn’t taste the finely processed walnuts at all. They may add slight body to this dip but I have a feeling they could be left out without compromising on taste. The coarsely chopped walnuts on top add a nice crunchy contrast to the smooth cheese.
This cat agreed. He watched the coffee table at the party all night to sneak a little bite (which he succeeded at right at the end)
Other party pics… I had my camera so I couldn’t really help myself.
There were sweets…
And a Yankee swap. Things got pretty nasty.
I was *this* close to stealing the Bacon vs. Tofu action figures. Hahaha
Are you hosting any parties in the upcoming weeks? Do you have a go-to appetizer you like to serve?