We all imagine ourselves being the perfect host. The stress-free, big smile, immaculate hair entertainer with amazingly fresh and absolutely original dishes to offer every time someone pays a visit.
In reality the scene looks more like us rushingly getting out of our comfy clothes and running to the kitchen to pull some crisps out of the cupboard along with that forgotten dip from the back of the fridge we bought a month ago for this sort of emergencies.
On my continuous search for recipes that are enjoyable to prepare, delicious and fast to make I came across an interesting one for a 3 ingredient Parmesan spread from Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks.
I was curious to try this as well as doubting the fact that it comes together in 5 minutes flat and there is no heat involved in the making.
Man did it work! the spread is like a cold and lighter version of a fondue, with subtle grassy tones coming form the extra virgin olive oil and the sharpness of uncooked white wine.
I served it with carrot and baby radish crudités, rosemary grissinis and walnut crackers.
The recipe is really open to creativity, you can add flavours and textures: chilli flakes, pink freshly crushed peppercorns, lemon zest, rinsed salted capers, dry fruit... your imagination is the limit.
Next to it I made an avocado and goat's feta dip as good and fast to make as the previous one, with spring onion and fresh green chilli. Like a westernized guacamole wholesome and 10 times better for you than the supermarket versions. The hardest thing this wintery days is to get your hands on a decent avocado but if you're perseverant like me you will.
Unexpected visitors this weekend? Do try, I'd love to hear what you think of it.
Adapted from 101 Cookbooks
Makes 2 cups
Keeps for 2 weeks sealed and in the fridge
150 gr good quality parmesan grated super thin using a Microplane
50 ml extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup dry white wine
Pinch of salt
Freshly ground pepper
Extra EVOO for the top
In a glass jar or a bowl add finely grated parmesan, extra virgin olive oil, wine and pinch of salt and mix gently either shaking the jar or with a wooden spoon to amalgamate the ingredients together in a soft spread. Press gently to flatten the surface and add a bit of freshly ground pepper on top. Cover with extra olive oil (keeps the spread fresher if you're keeping it but also adds great depth of flavours if you're serving immediately.
Remember to bring out to room temperature if you have stored it in the fridge and at this point is when you want to add any extra ingredients.
AVOCADO AND GOAT'S CHEESE DIP
Makes 2 cups
2 medium size avocados, ripe
2 spring onions, green and white parts sliced finely
2 green chillies, chopped finely
120 gr soft goat's cheese feta , crumbled
Pinch of salt and pepper
1 tsp lime juice
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Micro greens to garnish
In a medium bowl mash avocado with the back of a fork until soft and creamy, combine the rest of the ingredients except micro greens, and mix till incorporated . Check for seasoning and serve with micro greens and crudités.