- 4 ounces mild, soft goat cheese such as Montrachet
- Torn basil leaves, for marinating cheese
- Pink peppercorns, for marinating cheese
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 4 ripe avocados, halved, seeded, and peeled
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 4 dashes tabasco
- 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
- Salt to taste
- Tomato wedges, cucumber slices, and thin rounds of French bread for garnish
SPICY LIMED PEPITAS:
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
- A pinch of cayenne, to taste
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup raw pepitas (hulled green pumpkin seeds), unsalted
Marinate goat cheese in olive oil, in a small covered container, with some torn basil leaves and peppercorns at room temperature, at least a day. (you can add fresh herbs and spices such as basil, thyme, rosemary, and peppercorns, if you wish, to flavor cheese.) Goat cheese can marinate indefinitely, as long as completely covered with oil.
Before serving, lift cheese out of oil. Combine with avocados, lemon juice, tabasco, and pepper in a large bowl. Mash with a fork until mixture is slightly lumpy, not a smooth puree. Season sparingly with salt, since goat cheese can be very salty.
To serve, center a scoop on small plates. Garnish with spicy pepitas (recipe below), tomato wedges, thick cucumber slices, and thin rounds of French bread.
Spicy Limed Pepitas:
- Makes 1/2 cup
In a small bowl, combine lime juice, cayenne, salt, and pepper and stir until dissolved. Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add pepitas and toast, tossing frequently, until seeds begin to expand and turn a light golden color. Add seasoned lime juice and stir well to coat all seeds. Remove from heat and cool in the pan. Serve at room temperature