Saturday, November 7, 2009

Feta-Walnut Spread Recipe

I make this feta-walnut spread regularly. Inspired by a popular Turkish appetizer, I have modified my version from the recipes I have seen, and it only contains, feta, walnuts, olive oil, paprika, and cayenne pepper.

Walnuts are high in Omega-3 fatty acids, protect your heart from atherosclerosis, may help lower cholesterol, and have also been found to help prevent gall stones. I add nearly equal parts walnuts to feta in order to maximize these benefits, and usually seek out a more richly flavored sheep’s milk feta, too, which is generally easier to digest than cows’ milk.

I like this spread on toast in the mornings, or on a sandwich for lunch with some tomatoes and sprouts, or as an hors d’oeuvre at a party with some crackers. It is so simple to make, and surprisingly flavorful; guests at my house who have eaten this are usually baffled by what’s in it, and invariably ask for the recipe. Now, they have it, and you do, too.

Feta-Walnut Spread Recipe

2 cups walnuts
1 pound feta , crumbled (Bulgarian feta, or Turkish feta, either cows' milk or sheep’s milk; Greek feta is usually too mild for me, but some people might prefer it)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons paprika
cayenne pepper, to taste

In a food processor, grind the walnuts until they are in very small pieces. Add the crumbled feta and the olive oil to the bowl of the processor and mix until a smooth paste forms. If it is too thick, add the water now, slowly, through the feed tube, until a smooth paste forms. The spread shouldn’t be too thick, nor too thin, so add the water slowly. You may need more than 1/4 cup. Add the paprika, and the cayenne pepper. Mix well.

Spoon the spread out into a serving bowl and top with a drizzle of olive oil and some paprika. Serve with crackers or toasted pita bread wedges.

Similar recipes from A Hungry Bear Won't Dance: Hummus Recipe, Almond and Sun Dried Tomato Basil Pesto, Fresh Ricotta and Mint Recipe: a Spread with Purple Garlic and Olive Oil


Velva said...

This walnut spread looks absolutely delicious! Thanks for sharing.