Tuesday, 1 May 2012

A Spring Open House ... put a spring in our step!

The Short-Stack Foodie was on location in  SUNNY Burlington this past Sunday; serving up a spring-time-inspired menu for a group of wonderful women who had gathered to do some shoppping at a local paper-craft-company. 

The "Spring-gria" flowed, the crostini crunched and the lemon-lime squares disappeared before my very eyes. 

Thank you ladies for the laughs, the requests for recipes (check your inboxes over the next couple of days!) and the heartfelt support for this new venture of mine. 

I hope the vanilla-scented caramel corn made it home to your kids and husbands ... actually, who am I kidding, I hope you ate it in the car on the way home! 

Happy spring everyone, I look forward to seeing you all again REALLY soon!  But until then, do give the Herbed Chèvre & Sugar Snap Pea Salad Crostini a try for yourselves ... it's sure to put a 'spring' in your step!

Herbed Chèvre & Sugar Snap Pea Salad Crostini

You will need:  Food processor, cutting board, small/paring knife, bread knife, measuring spoons-n-cups, baking sheet, parchment paper or aluminum foil, squeeze bottle (to help make the plating a little bit easier) and a serving platter. 
NOW throw open your kitchen window ... I did, as the flowers on our crab apple tree are in full bloom ... the smell of spring is in the air ...

  • 250g cream cheese – roughly one small tub.  I use Philadelphia ‘regular’ ‘cause really, lite-cream cheese never tastes as good and who are we kidding, fat is our friend J
  • 125g chèvre – roughly a quarter of a ‘large log’
  • 2T dried chives (fresh if you’ve got ‘em, but my herbs haven’t yet started growing due to the recent frost!)
  • 1T sour cream or plain yoghurt (either will be fine)
  • ¼ fresh parsley (packed) roughly chopped
  • Juice of ½ a lemon
  • ¼ cup of milk (to thin it out to the consistency that you want (the amount will really depend on if you use fresh/dried herbs and how ‘thin’ you want the mixture to be) use your judgement …
  • Salt & pepper (to taste)
  • Baguette (whatever kind you like, cut into ~1/2 inch circles or cut on the bias to make ‘em larger – up to you
  • Sugar snap peas (depends on how much ‘salad’ you want on top of each crostini, and how large your crostini actually is, I would say a ‘little handful’ per crostini).  Roughly 1-2 cups of sugar snap peas – biased sliced.
  • Pea sprouts (if you can find ‘em in the grocery store – happily Longo’s always carries them!

What to do next …
  • Put the cream cheese, chèvre, chives, sour  cream, parsley and lemon juice in food processor and blend ‘til combined.  (I pulse a few times at the start just to help everything being to mingle-around in there together!)
  • Add milk in little ‘bursts’ until you’ve reached the desired consistency. 
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Throw the mixture into a squeeze bottle if you’ve got one, otherwise throw it all in a bowl and refrigerate. 
  • Trim off the ends of the sugar snap peas, and remove the stringy-bit that runs along the back of the pea.  (See first image below.)
  • Bias slice the sugar snap peas.  (See second image below.)
  • Slice the tops off the pea shoots.
  • Toss ‘em all together.
  • When you’re ready to serve, drizzle some olive oil on the pre-cut baguette slices, pop on a parchment paper lined baking sheet (hello easy clean-up) and place in a preheated 375 degree oven for 8-10 minutes depending on how hot your oven is. 
  • When the crostini emerge from the oven, let cool slightly, top with a ‘squirt’ of chèvre mixture, sprinkle pea-salad on top … and await the “ooohhs and aahhhs” from your guests. 
Happy spring.


  1. Oh everything looked so good!!! And delicious! I looked at the recipe for the crostini (b/c they sounded amazing) and sadly, you lost me at "food processor", so I am officially inviting myself over to your house to try them! And vanilla scented caramel corn??? Mmmm....actually I'm hosting a baby shower this summer and I'm thinking these would make great favours for people to take-away. I'll email you for details!
    Great job!

    1. Given your family history with food processors it's little wonder you don't own one!!!!! I've PM'ed you some favours-take-away ideas - and I'll also bring round some samples of nibbles-in-progress (nibbles-in-training? recipes in testing-mode?) next time I come over to your place - can't wait!