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Herbed Feta Walnut Spread

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Herbed Feta Walnut Spread

Time: 15-20 minutes

Serves: 8 as an appetizer

Inspired by: A Persian friend of mine made this for a party and I loved all of the flavor nuances in it. I believe this is a combination of her recipe and others I’ve read on the web and then my own refinements. The Persian name for this spread is nan-o panir-o-gerdu.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ pound feta cheese
  • 2 cups shelled walnuts (Whole Foods or Trader Joes)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh scallions – chopped
  • 4 tablespoons fresh basil  – chopped
  • 4  tablespoons fresh mint – chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Juice of one lime
  • 2 – 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Pita bread or lavash (soft or crunchy) or raw veggies

Preparation:

  • Chop scallions and basil and mint leaves by hand or in your food processor. Don’t chop too fine. Remove from food processor.
  • Don’t clean food processor – toss walnuts in and whirl until finely chopped.
  • Add the feta to the nuts and chop/blend the two.
  • Then add garlic, pepper, lime juice and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and mix well.
  • Taste and then add salt if needed and add additional olive oil for flavor and texture – but if you like the thicker consistency, don’t add too much oil.
  • Remove mixture from food processor and hand mix with the scallions and herbs.

Note: I saw an identical recipe recently that also included 2 tablespoons of tarragon.

Serve with: Use as a dip with cut up pita bread or raw vegetables, or as a spread on lavash or crackers.

Wine Suggestions: The herbs in the spread pair well with herbal, aromatic whites such as a Spanish Verdejo or Sauvignon Blanc  – although many Sauv Blancs will be too herbatous or grassy and that could take away from the beautiful delicate flavors in the spread. If you are going for a Sauvignon Blanc, a White Bordeax is probably your best option. A Grüner Veltliner could also be a good option or any light crisp white such as an Albarino, Chablis or a light White Burgundy.

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