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    Dates with Cheese and White Bean Paste - Quick Appetizers

    Geo Beats

    by Geo Beats

    Making Appetizers in 5 Minutes - as part of the expert series by GeoBeats. Here are two of my favorite quick appetizers for those guests that have stopped in unexpectedly or even for just for a nice snack for yourself. The first thing that I like to do is to take nice, sweet, medjool dates. Take your knife, simply cut through one side of the date very lightly— just enough to squeeze it open and pop out the pit. We have a couple of those here. Take the open dates, and we are going to cut a little bit of a nice, creamy, blue cheese. This happens to be a creamy gorgonzola cheese, but any soft blue cheese would be a great fit for this. We are simply going to just put the blue cheese right inside the date. Give a little bit of a squeeze so that it sticks together and put it on your plate. It is a really pretty presentation and it is a nice, little, sweet, and savory taste in the afternoon. My second favorite easy thing to do is to make a white bean dip using a little bit of pesto for extra flavor. I start out by taking a can of cannellini beans, or white navy beans, draining them, rinsing them really well - to rinse off any of those salts or anything that is in the can - and making sure that they are pretty much shaken dry. Then, I am going to take my food processor, you can also use a blender for this, and the beans go right in. You can add in a little bit of olive oil or if you prefer not to add additional fat, just a little bit of water because the beans a little bit of liquid in there to help them get puréed. I am going to put in about a half teaspoon of olive oil. Then I am going to add in about two tablespoons of pesto. This is fresh basil pesto but you can absolutely use a package pesto from the supermarket if that is what you have got. I am going to put that right in. We are going to blend that to purée it. Sometimes you need to stir it to make sure that any of the beans from the top have gotten down to the bottom. When it is done, you spoon it out into your serving bowl. It goes really well with fresh cut up vegetables, crackers, or even on some toasted French bread for a crostini. And those are my quick, five minute, appetizers. Enjoy!