Monday, 17 May 2010

Four-Pepper Cream Cheese with Green Olives

I love pepper; I really truly adore the stuff.  Even the word 'pepper' is delightful, isn't it?  Such a frisky spark of a word. I have all sorts of peppers in my cupboard, and one of my favourites is white pepper, which  is a fine-tasting spice, and so curiously unfashionable these days. I'm also a big fan of dried green peppercorns, which you never see in a supermarket but which you can buy, at a very reasonable price, in most Indian spice shops.

Four-Pepper Cream Cheese with Green Olives
Anyway, here's how I indulged my love of pepper. For this snack, I used a great new product from Lancewood: their Superior Cream Cheese, which has a lovely taste and creamy texture and comes in a demouldable (is that actually a word?) tub. All you need to is tip it out, top with with interesting flavourings - some sweet chilli sauce, perhaps, or a variety of toasted seeds - and then serve it with a flourish. What's more, it's just over half the price of Philadelphia cream cheese, which is so expensive these days that I just cannot bring myself to buy it.

 Do you like my beautiful red leaves, which come from the grapevine on my veranda? Their colour is glorious, especially when the late afternoon sun shines through them and lights them up like stained glass windows.

Four-Pepper Cream Cheese with Green Olives
1 block of cream cheese
2 T (30 ml) white peppercorns
2 T (30 ml) dried green peppercorns
2 T (30 ml) Szechuan peppercorns
2 T (30 ml) dried pink peppercorns

Unmould the block of cream cheese and place on piece of waxed paper. Crush each type of pepper, one by one, using a mortar and pestle. How finely you crush them is up to you.  Use a knife to mark four 'stripes' of equal width across the cheese.  'Mask' three of the stripes with a piece of waxed paper, aligning the straight edge with the first knife mark on the cheese, and pressing the paper down the sides of the cheese.  Pat the first lot of peppercorns onto the top, sides and edge of the cheese.  Blow away any excess. Now turn the cheese around, and press another pepper into the other end.  Repeat the process with the middle two stripes. Place on a clean plate and serve with green olives and crackers.

Serves 6 as a snack.
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Kit said...

It looks gorgeous and I love the vine leaf - ours are also glowing red outside.
I can see you producing it in a South African flag design for the soccer series...!

Anderburf said...

This sounds so good! I just got a mix of lovely organic peppercorns from Sustainable Sourcing for Mother's Day. I think I'll have to try them out in this recipe. Thanks for sharing!

dining room tables said...

This is a very interesting recipe! I like to try this one. I think I should get the ingredients now.