12 Days of Christmas Treats – Winter White Edition
Day 7 – herby goat cheese appetizer layered with basil pesto and sundried tomatoes
does your mind ever turn to goat cheese???
The first thing to think of when you have invited a bunch of people over is what shall I serve them when they walk in the door? My mind quickly turns to cheese. Wouldn’t you agree that it eventually all comes down to cheese?? I especially like to prepare an appetizer ahead of time, leaving more time for the last minute fussy dishes. The next time you are thinking of a new recipe to try, consider this herby goat cheese appetizer. It is a particularly great holiday choice because of the intense green of the basil pesto, and the bright red of the sun dried tomatoes. It will look so festive on your serving platter, and is the perfect first bite to offer to your guests.
go grab your smallest spring form pan…
The goat cheese portion is easy to prepare, especially if you have access to a food processor. Just throw the goat cheese, cream cheese, and seasonings in the container, and you are all done with the first step! I like to use a small spring form pan to hold the shape of the cheese layers. It is also a good idea to place plastic wrap on the bottom of the pan to make the transfer to your serving platter a breeze. The goat cheese mixture is split into thirds and transforms into the top and bottom of the appetizer.
layer after layer it just keeps getting better!
After the first layer of goat cheese is spread in the pan, a layer of basil pesto is spread over the top. Another layer of of goat cheese is layered on top of the basil pesto, followed by a layer of sun dried tomatoes. The final step is to spread the remaining goat cheese mixture on the top.
a few blackberries always make everything better!
At this point, your appetizer is stored in the refrigerator and waits patiently for your guests to arrive. All that is left is to throw a few crackers on your serving tray. And a few blackberries for good measure. My advice is to serve yourself a quick cracker, because before you know it your platter will be empty!Print
herby goat cheese appetizer layered with basil pesto and sundried tomatoes
a delicious layered appetizer that will disappear quickly from your appetizer tray!
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: none
- Total Time: 30 minutes + chilling time
- Yield: 1 springform pan of layered cheese 1x
- Category: appetizer
- Method: mix and refrigerate
16 oz. softened cream cheese
2 4oz. goat packages of goat cheese (I like to use flavored goat cheese such as honey and tomato-basil)
4 cloves of minced garlic
1 tsp of dried oregeno
1 tsp white pepper
zest from 1 lemon
1 TB fresh lemon juice
1 TB white balsamic (you may use a flavored balsamic if desired)
one half cup of basil pesto (store bought or freshly made)
one half cup of sundried chopped tomatoes (you may use oil packed, or the dry variety that you add your own olive oil to)
12 sprigs of fresh thyme (reserve 2 for sprinkling on the top)
Line a small cheesecake pan with plastic wrap
Mix together the cream cheese, goat cheese, garlic, oregano, white pepper, lemon zest and juice, balsamic vinegar, and fresh thyme in a food processor or alternatively you may whisk together in a medium sized bowl
Spread 1/3 of cheese mixture in the bottom of the pan
Top with the basil pesto
Spread 1/3 of cheese mixture on top of the basil
Top with sundried tomatoes
Spread last 1/3 of cheese on the top of sundried tomatoes
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight
On the day of your gathering, unmold the springform pan and place on your serving platter.
Serve with assorted crackers and optional blackberries