Pecan-Date Spread

I found this idea in Fine Cooking (#102, p. 20), in the page on new ways to use seasonal ingredients compliments of editor Lisa Waddle. I was a little doubtful at first and honestly, when I had my first bite, I wasn’t quite sure how I felt about it. The consensus at the part was that although it was sweeter than expected, it was a great spread.

Note: Fine Cooking didn’t list portions, so feel free to use more or less of the below, according to your taste.

Date-Pecan Spread

Inspired by a Lisa Waddle suggestion in Fine Cooking #102

Yields about 1 1/2 cups spread

Ingredients:

  • 1 – 1 1/2 c. chopped dried dates
  • 1/2 – 3/4 c. toasted pecans
  • zest of 1 orange
  • dry sherry

Combine first three ingredients in a food processor. Pulse for 30 seconds or so, until the mixture begins to come together.

Gradually add sherry to food processor, pulsing until mixture is combined to desired consistency. Mine was still a bit chunky, but you can also pulse until a smooth paste has been formed.

Serve: with fresh bread as an appetizer. Crackers would also work, but we weren’t impressed with the spread on crostini. This is a great appetizer on its own, or as a compliment to a cheese board (I enjoyed it with brie).

Fine Cooking also suggested adding the spread to a grilled cheese sandwich or turkey panini.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Artichoke Parmesan Pesto

Here’s a quick appetizer you can have on hand for unexpected guests. I have frozen this both when directed as well as the completely finished pesto (with the Parmesan), and it is good both ways. I serve this in a bowl, and let everyone help themselves, but you can also pre-spread the pesto onto toast or bread.

I’m hoping for leftovers, as I’d love to try this mixed in pasta with a little olive oil and red pepper flakes, or stuffed in a chicken breast. If you beat me to it, be sure to let me know how you liked it!

Artichoke Parmesan Pesto

Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

Ingredients (Before Freezing):

  • 1-8 oz. pack of frozen artichoke hearts, thawed
  • 1 c. fresh parsley
  • 1/2 c. chopped toasted walnuts
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 c. olive oil

More Ingredients (After Freezing):

  • 2/3 grated Parmesan
  • bread or cracker of your choice…. for grilling, toasting, or serving plain

Pre-Freezer Directions:

In a food processor, chop the artichokes, parsley, walnuts, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper, scraping the sides as necessary. With the food processor in, add the olive oil.

If freezing, transfer to an airtight container (or pre-portion into an ice cube tray and wrap tightly with plastic wrap). Freeze for up to 1 month.

Post-Freezer Directions:

Thaw pesto.

Mix in Parmesan cheese (2 tsp. per ice cube if you’re freezing it that way).

Serve as part of a platter of dips, breads, and crackers (including homemade pita toasts), and allowed everyone to help themselves. If you prefer, toast some bread, spread the pesto, and serve.

Save

Save

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Homemade Onion Dip

Caramelized onions infuse a traditional sour cream & mayonnaise combo to create a sweet homemade onion dip, a delicious accompaniment for fresh vegetables or salted potato chips.

Caramelized onions infuse a traditional sour cream & mayonnaise combo to create a sweet homemade onion dip, a delicious accompaniment for fresh vegetables or salted potato chips.

Want to know a secret? While mixing up a packet of seasoning is a quick way to make onion dip, there’s a better option. Homemade onion dip is way better and it’s not hard. It takes about 30 minutes of prep and cook time and BAM! You have a flavorful and sweeter dip, and guess what? You know every single ingredient that goes into it!

Caramelized onions infuse a traditional sour cream & mayonnaise combo to create a sweet homemade onion dip, a delicious accompaniment for fresh vegetables or salted potato chips.

See, I had always had onion dip that came from a packet, or some store-bought version, and I was never a bit fan. It was just too… oniony. Too processed. And then a friend brought a homemade version to our house one day and I totally changed my tune. This is sweet and fresh. I couldn’t stop eating it.

Caramelized onions infuse a traditional sour cream & mayonnaise combo to create a sweet homemade onion dip, a delicious accompaniment for fresh vegetables or salted potato chips.

An added bonus is that this dip is definitely a recipe to make ahead. The longer it sits, the longer the flavors infuse into the sour cream and mayo. Serve with veggies, crackers, or chips.

Print
Caramelized onions infuse a traditional sour cream & mayonnaise combo to create a sweet homemade onion dip, a delicious accompaniment for fresh vegetables or salted potato chips.

Homemade Onion Dip

Caramelized onions infuse a traditional sour cream & mayonnaise combo to create a sweet homemade onion dip, a delicious accompaniment for fresh vegetables or salted potato chips.

Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 211 kcal
Author Liz

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 1/2 c. diced onions about 2 onions
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 c. sour cream
  • 3/4 c. mayonnaise
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. ground pepper preferably white
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in a medium pan.
  2. Add onions and salt, cooking until onions are caramelized, about 20 minutes. Onions will be a deep brown.
  3. Set aside to cool.
  4. Once cooled, mix together all ingredients. Just before serving, stir and transfer to a serving bowl.

Recipe Notes

This recipe makes about 2 1/2 cups of dip. That's 10-1/4 cup servings, or 20-2 Tbs. servings.

If desired, you may reserve a tablespoon of caramelized onions to garnish the dip just before serving.

This recipe was adapted from Alton Brown.

Caramelized onions infuse a traditional sour cream & mayonnaise combo to create a sweet homemade onion dip, a delicious accompaniment for fresh vegetables or salted potato chips.

This post, one of the first on the blog, was updated with new photos and updated formatting in 2018. The old photos didn’t do the dip justice, trust me.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email