A Renewed Enthusiasm
With all the injuries, moving apartments, crazy heat waves and other life-craziness, A Book of Hors d'Oeuvres and I took a little hiatus from each other. However, the weather has already begun to cool down - although my heart will not let me totally admit that it is already happening - and my stomach has begun to agree to let me put more than gazpacho and Mexican beer in it. Which brings us back, as ever, to where we started: more cream cheese.
The recipe for Cheesehill Wafers does something that most of my favorite recipes in this book do. It gives you an idiotic amount of creative license. The first instruction is "season cream cheese". At first, that means salt and pepper. But then, it could also mean lemon zest. And, if you are me, which is a condition that generally lends itself to ingredient enthusiasm, it also means pimentón, cayenne and chives.
This creates a happy accident. It tinges your cream cheese just slightly pinky-orange, in a way that makes this ingredient-happy Labrador quite nostalgic for EZ-Cheese. Yeah, you guys. Fancy EZ-Cheese. That is what we're talking about here. This also forms a mildly Spanish, lemony, velvet pillow for half an olive to ride on its way into your mouth.
Welcome back, cream cheese. You look pretty fly after summer vacation.
Season cream cheese, moisten slightly with cream* and force through pastry bag and star tube on round, thin wafers. Press half of a small pimiento-stuffed olive into the center of each mound of cheese. One may vary this wafer by using a small round of watermelon pickle instead of the olive.
*I used buttermilk instead of cream, because that is a thing I often do.