Recipes from My Kitchen

Apps for a Night Out

on March 24, 2014

So a week or two ago I went out with my friend Theresa, which meant I got to make some appetizers 🙂  Three cheers for new recipe night!  I didn’t have a lot of time, so I found a recipe (ok, two of them) that were pretty quick, required very few ingredients, and were pretty tasty.  The first is a date log – this would be great served with crackers, cheese, and fruit.  It’s great for an appetizer for a gathering – it’s a very rich dish, but so easy you won’t mind making it.  The second is a ricotta-type empanada.  A great cheese dish, rich, but not over the top.

Date Log (

I only made half of the recipe – but it was really easy.  You don’t have to toast the pecans, they smell good, but if you’re short on time.   Toast the chopped nuts in the oven until they’re fragrant – about 10 minutes.20140314_174916Mix together the chopped dates, sugar, honey, orange zest and juice in a pot on the stove. 20140314_175459 Bring the pot to a simmer, until it thickens, then add in the pecans.  Here’s where I went wrong (don’t get me wrong, it was still delicious, but I am ready to throw out all of the wax paper I own – it does me no good).  20140314_180557When the mixture has thickened, add to a sheet of parchment paper (not wax paper – do as I say, not as I do!) and mold into a log shape.  Chill in the fridge until you’re ready to serve (remove and bring to room temp when you’re ready).  Don’t use wax paper – the log is *very* sticky and you can’t peel the two apart.  Parchment would work so much better, I just didn’t have any.  This will be a sticky mess, but if you slice it with a sharp knife on a wooden board/solid surface, it will be worth it.20140314_181731


The cheese empanada (or Maltese Pastizzi was super easy to make – thaw out some puff pastry and roll it out.  Mix ricotta with an egg and some cheese, salt, pepper.   Cut out the puff pastry with a ring mold (i.e. an upside down cup), fill with a tablespoon of ricotta mix, and then seal up.  Brush with an egg (if you have one, but not needed), and then bake.  That’s it!!


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