Category Archives: Appetizers

Chipotle and Rosemary Roasted Nuts by Ina Garten


chipotle_nutsChipotle and Rosemary Roasted Nuts by Ina Garten

When I throw a dinner party in the winter months, I love serving roasted nuts  with drinks before dinner.  Here’s my new favorite recipe.


Vegetable oil

3 cups whole roasted unsalted cashews (14 ounces)
2 cups whole walnut halves (7 ounces)
2 cups whole pecan halves (7 ounces)
½ cup whole almonds (3 ounces)
¹/³ cup pure maple syrup
¼ cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
2 teaspoons ground chipotle powder
4 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary leaves, divided
Kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Brush a sheet pan generously with vegetable oil. Combine the cashews, walnuts, pecans, almonds, 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, the maple syrup, brown sugar, orange juice, and chipotle powder on the sheet pan. Toss to coat the nuts evenly. Add 2 tablespoons of the rosemary and 2 teaspoons of salt and toss again.

Spread the nuts in one layer. Roast the nuts for 25 minutes, stirring twice with a large metal spatula, until the nuts are glazed and golden brown. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with 2 more teaspoons of salt and the remaining 2 tablespoons of rosemary.

Toss well and set aside at room temperature, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking as they cool. Taste for seasoning. Serve warm or cool completely and store in airtight containers at room temperature.

Feta Dip


Feta Dip

I like serving this with a big plate of raw vegetables.  


6 ounces feta (Try Provato brand Feta)

1/2 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill, plus torn sprigs for serving

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Olive oil 

Blend feta and a splash of water in a food processor. Transfer to a medium bowl and mix in parsley, mint, and chopped dill; season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with oil and top with dill sprigs.

Smoked Trout Pâté



trout_main Smoked Trout Pâté  from Nigella Express by Nigella Lawson

The only change I make to this recipe is using oil from the trout fillets in place of olive oil – it seems to boost the trout flavor!  Looking for a way to use leftover roasted salmon?  Just substitute it for the trout and you’re in business.

Yield:  Serves 4 as a starter


2 smoked trout fillets, about 4 ounces total

1/4 cup cream cheese

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons olive oil (I prefer using oil from the trout fillets in place of olive oil – it seems to boost the trout flavor!)

1 tablespoon horseradish sauce

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper


Put all of the above ingredients into a food processor and blitz until smooth and pâté-like. Serve with bread or your favorite cracker. I like to serve it with these rye crackers from Trader Joe’s.

The Union Square Cafe’s Bar Nuts by Nigella Lawson

nuts_detail nuts_main nuts_detail2

The Union Square Cafe’s Bar Nuts by Nigella Lawson

I love this recipe because it’s tasty AND it makes the house smell great! I prefer thyme over rosemary any day so that’s how I make my version.

Yield:2 1/4 cups mixed nuts


2 1/4 cups (18-ounces) assorted unsalted nuts, including peeled peanuts, cashews, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, walnuts, pecans and whole unpeeled almonds

2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary leaves

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 teaspoons dark brown sugar

2 teaspoons Maldon or other sea salt

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Toss the nuts in a large bowl to combine and spread them out on a baking sheet. Toast in the oven until light golden brown, about 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the rosemary, cayenne, sugar, salt and melted butter. Thoroughly toss the toasted nuts in the spiced butter and serve warm.