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Fabio Viviani's Holiday Appetizers
Fabio Viviani's Holiday Appetizers

Cheese And Pepperoncini Dip

Ingredients:
• ½ lb grated Cheddar
• ½ lb grated Muenster • ¼ cup mayonnaise • 2 Tbsp Stone Ground Mustard • 2 Tbsp Hot Sauce • ⅓ cup diced Pepperoncini • Onion and Garlic Powder • Kosher Salt
Recipe:

  1. Mix ½ pound each grated cheddar and Muenster, ¼ cup mayonnaise, 2 Tbsp Stone Ground Mustard, 2 Tbsp Hot Sauce, ⅓ cup diced Pepperoncini.
  2. Season with onion and Garlic Powder and Kosher Salt.

Fabio's Tomato Tart Appetizer

Ingredients for the crust:
• 2 cups plus 1 tbsp.
• Unbleached flour • 10 tbsp. butter, cold, plus more butter for the pan • 5 tbsp. water, cold
Ingredients for the filling:

• 2 medium celery stalks, chopped • 2 carrots, diced • 1 medium-size red onion, chopped • 2 cloves garlic, minced • 2 lb. very ripe tomatoes, • cut in large pieces and pressed to drain • 3 tbsp. olive oil • Salt and pepper • 1 bunch basil • Shaved Parmesan (optional)
Recipe:

  1. To make the crust, put the flour and butter into a food processor with the blade attachment and incorporate the butter by pulsing a few times.
  2. Add the water 1 tablespoon at a time while continuing to pulse.
  3. When all the flour is absorbed, remove the dough from the food processor and work it with your hands a bit to form a ball.
  4. Cover it with a slightly moist linen towel and place it in the fridge till you need it.
  5. Butter a 10-inch round springform pan. Roll out the dough on a floured surface to about ¼-inch thick.
  6. It should be large enough to completely cover the pan and hang over the sides.
  7. Using a fork, make holes all over the dough, then refrigerate for about 2 hours.
  8. To make the filling, put the celery, carrots, onion, garlic, and tomatoes into a Dutch oven or a lidded nonstick pan over medium heat, drizzle them with the olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
  9. Cook and reduce for about 1 hour, covered. Stir occasionally to make sure the tomatoes don't stick to the bottom of the pan.
  10. Take the lid off and keep cooking, still over medium heat, for another 15 minutes, pressing the tomatoes with a potato masher until they are completely crushed and the mixture has reduced completely.
  11. Transfer it to a bowl to cool down. Once it has reached room temperature, place it in the fridge for about 30 minutes to chill.
  12. To make the tart, preheat the oven to 375˚F.
  13. Pour the filling into the dough and cover it with the basil leaves.
  14. Fold the extra dough hanging over the side of the pan toward the center.
  15. ll of the tomato filling should be covered except a small part in the middle. Bake for about 1 hour or until the crust is nice and brown and flaky.
  16. Let it cool down, then run a knife around the edges of the pan to make sure that the pastry dough is detached from the sides.
  17. Removethe springform sides and serve the tart on the pan bottom at room temperature, sprinkled with flaky shaved Parmesan if you want.

Ricotta-Filled Dates Wrapped in Prosciutto

Ingredients:
• 25 dried dates, as large a s possible
• 1 lb. ricotta cheese • 25 slices prosciutto, cut in half lengthwise • Extra-virgin olive oil • Pepper
Recipe:

  1. Cut the dates in half and use a teaspoon to place a dollop of ricotta in each half.
  2. Wrap each half-date in a half-slice of prosciutto and place them in a baking pan. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oli and dust with pepper.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes.


For More Information On Fabio, And His Newsletter "Fabio’s Kitchen Academy, " visit his website www.fabioviviani.com.

Fabio's New Cookbook, "Fabio’s Italian Kitchen," is available on amazon.com.