Marinated Goat Cheese

May 18, 2009 By: Megabeth Category: Snacks/Appetizers


This is another yet another recipe from the Cafe Flora cookbook. Their description is dead-on that this goat cheese is “irresistibly delicious” and “tastes like you put much more time into it than you did.” It just takes a few minutes to cut up the tomatoes, basil and garlic, throw the stuff into a bowl, and marinate. Best of all, you don’t have to tell anyone that it’s that quick and easy to make.

Marinated Goat Cheese
Cafe Flora Cookbook

4 large fresh basil leaves, plus a spring for garnish
4 Roma tomatoes, most of the seeds removed, diced
2 Tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained, or 6 kalamata olives, pitted and roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4-oz log goat cheese
salt and freshly ground pepper

Cut the basil in a chiffonade. Stack the basil leaves on top of each other. Roll them up tightly, starting at the stem, and slice thinly across the rolled-up leaves. This will give you long thing strips of basil.

Marinated Goat Cheese

Marinated Goat Cheese

Marinated Goat Cheese

Mix the marinade. In a bowl, combine all the ingredients except the goat cheese, salt and pepper. Put the log of goat cheese in the center of a shallow serving bowl, and pour the tomato mixture over it.

Marinated Goat Cheese

Marinate the goat cheese for about an hour. (If you’re going to marinate the cheese longer than that, refrigerate it and then take it out half an hour or so before serving to return it to room tempurature.)

Marinated Goat Cheese

Serve the goat cheese. Just before serving, taste it, add salt if you think it needs it, and grind pepper over all. Garnish with a sprig of basil. Serve with a knife to cut the goat cheese and a spoon to scoop up the flavorful tomato mixture.

Fig and Pecan Tapenade with Goat Cheese

January 01, 2009 By: Megabeth Category: Other, Snacks/Appetizers

This fig and pecan tapenade made a unique addition to a New Year’s brunch we attended. It’s also pretty versatile in it’s presentation. You can either pre-assemble the crackers or have everyone create their own. The sweet figs, balsamic vinegar, olives and capers are a savory combination and go very well with the fresh goat cheese. Preparation couldn’t be easier. Just some chopping and a few minutes on the stove. And, you’re done!

Fig and Pecan Tapenade with Goat Cheese
Adapted from: Epicurious


  • 1 cup chopped stemmed dried Calimyrna figs
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup chopped pitted Kalamata olives or other oil-cured black olives
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon drained capers, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 5.5-ounce logs soft fresh goat cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped toasted and salted pecans
  • 1/4 cup toasted and salted pecan halves
  • Fresh thyme sprigs for garnish
  • Assorted breads and/or crackers
[Edited to add: Use a container of already crumbled goat cheese – it’s easier to add to the mixture when it’s cooled off.]

Combine chopped figs and 1/3 cup water in heavy medium saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat until liquid evaporates and figs are soft, about 7 minutes.

Transfer to medium bowl. Mix in olives, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, capers, and chopped thyme.

Season tapenade to taste with pepper. (Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.)

Stir chopped pecans into tapenade. Assemble crackers by adding some goat cheese to cracker. Spoon tapenade over goat cheese. Or, for assembling a platter, cut goat cheese into 1/2 inch rounds. Spoon tapenade into middle of platter. Arrange overlapping cheese rounds in circle and add the crackers or breah around the edge. Garnish with pecan halves and thyme sprigs.

Vegetarian “Spaghetti Carbonara”

September 16, 2008 By: Megabeth Category: Main Dishes

“Classic” spaghetti carbonara involves bacon or pancetta. “Classic” spaghetti carbonara involves spaghetti. “Classic” spaghetti carbonara sometimes involves onions. This version of this dish features none of those classic items.

So, what’s left? Well, I do use the classic technique of adding beaten eggs to the cooked pasta, but vegetarian bacon and capers add the salty tang to my version of this unique and easy-to-make dish.

Megabeth’s “Spaghetti Carbonara”

– 1 box (8 oz) of whole wheat linguine
– 5 – 6 strips of vegetarian bacon
– two eggs (egg substitute equivalent to two eggs)
– two tablespoons capers
– grated parmesean cheese

Prepare linguini per package instructions until al dente. Meanwhile, pre-heat toaster oven (or oven) to 450 degrees. (Note: you can also use a saute pan to cook the bacon until crisp, if preferred.) Spray toaster tray or cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray. Then spray lightly the top of the “bacon”.  Cook each side for about 3 minutes until desired crispiness is achieved. When cooked, cut “bacon” into small bite size pieces.

Crack two eggs in small bowl. Then whisk or beat with fork until blended.

When pasta is done cooking, drain and put in large bowl. Add beaten eggs to bowl and distribute through pasta. Add bacon pieces and capers. (Make sure pasta is still hot when adding the eggs. This is key to ensure the eggs are cooked thoroughly.) Sprinkle parmesean cheese into linguine until pasta is coated with it.

Serve with freshly ground pepper and enjoy.

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