Honey Blue Cheese Stuffed Endives
This is one of my favorite go to appetizers when I need to whip up a quick snack for guests--or in fact, when I just want a healthy snack. This honey blue cheese spread offers a sweet and salty flavor tamed by cream cheese. A little crunch is added with the walnuts and the endives. The endives also provide a perfect foil with its sweet but gentle bitter taste.
Inspiration for this recipe came from a trip to Costco food store where I tasted blue cheese with just a few drops of honey. The experience inspired this food photograph:
The recipe falls a little short of a full cup. Of course you can increase the ingredients. Another options is to top the spread with a thin layer of blue cheese, then chopped walnuts, and then garnish with the parsley. I love serving the honey blue cheese spread with the additional toppings when I'm having guests.
About Honey Orange Blossom
Are you're wondering why I used honey orange blossom? Why not just use any old honey? Yes, you can do that. But for those who never really thought about it, the subtle flavoring notes of honey is deteremined from where those magical bees collect their pollen. And so yes, you guesed it right: honey orange blossom has the light and delicate taste of orange, offerng just a hint of fruitiness to this recipe.
Just an aside, a favorite book of mine to read is Robbing the Bees by Holley Bishop, distributed by Simon and Schuster. It's a biography of honey and it's not boring! The book is a "celebration of, a love letter to bees and their magical produce." Hint. Hint.
Forgive me but I just couldn't resist this side note of why honey orange blossom is added to the cream cheese, blue cheese and walnuts.
Yields approximately 1 cup
1/2 cup Cream cheese, room temperature
2 Tablespoons Honey, preferably orange blossom
1/4 cup Blue cheese, chopped and partially crumbled
1/4 cup Walnuts, chopped
1 package (about 3 small heads) Belgium endives, leaf torn away
Italian flat-leaf parsley, chopped
In a small bowl and using a fork, blend honey and cream cheese. Add blue cheese but using the side of the fork cut it into the mixture. Try not to mash the blue cheese into the mixture. Add walnuts, and again cut the walnuts into the mixture.
Use a small spoon, knife or cheese knife to stuff the lower wider part of each endive. Garnish with parsley. (Another option for serving is to serve the spread in a bowl and allow guests to stuff their own endives.)