Friday, May 25, 2018

Herbed-Garlic Goat Cheese and Spiced Olives: Eric Ripert Appetizers or an Easy Friday Night Dinner

Friday nights call for easy dinners, for me that's sometimes an appetizer--or two like these recipes from Avec Eric by Eric Ripert. Add warm, toasted bread and a glass of white wine and it's a perfect Friday evening. 

I kept to the recipes with the exception of cutting down on the black pepper in the goat cheese. I am a big fan of black pepper, but a whole tablespoon seemed liked too much for even me.

Chef Ripert says, "Fresh chevre has a beautiful tart taste. Creamed together with garlic and herbs, it makes a great spread for slicesof crusty bread."

Garlic–Herbed Goat Cheese
From Avec Eric by Eric Ripert
(Serves 6)

8 oz fresh goat cheese
1/4 cup whole milk
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano leaves
1 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 Tbsp cracked black pepper (I used 1 heaping tsp)
1 tsp finely minced garlic
fine sea salt
toasted baguette slices

Beat the cheese, milk, oil, thyme, oregano, rosemary pepper and garlic in a large bowl until well blended and fluffy. Season to taste with salt.

Serve at room temperature with toasted baguette slices.


Chef Ripert says "It's easy to add flavors to regular cured olives and once mixed, the olives will continue to take on stronger flavors as they marinate."

Spiced Olives
From Avec Eric by Eric Ripert
(Makes 2 Cups)

2 cups mixed olives
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp toasted fennel seeds
1/2 tsp dried hot red chili flakes

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Let the olives marinate at room temperature for at least 1 hour before serving.

The marinated olives can be refrigerated, covered, for up to two weeks.

Notes/Results: I love pretty much any kind of goat cheese on its own but add herbs and garlic and I'm sold. This was a nice mix. I think cutting down on the pepper was a wise idea--I used a fairly heaping teaspoon and it was plenty peppery. I would have like to have used local goat cheese--well from Maui anyway, but the store near me that carries it was out of the plain goat cheese and so I went for a French one that was still delicious. The spiced olives were good with the mix of cumin and fennel--two of my favorite spices, rounded out by the lemon, garlic and slight kick from the red pepper flakes. My grocery store olive bar had some cured cipollini onions, so I added a few to my olive mix and they benefited from the spices too. With the toasted baguette slices and a cold glass of crisp white wine, it made for the perfect light, warm weather dinner to kick off the holiday weekend. I'd happily make either recipe again. 

Linking up to I Heart Cooking Clubs where this week's theme is From the West--Eric Ripert recipes from the western part of the world. The cheese is from the Sonoma California episode and the olives are from his Fonterutoli, Italy visit.
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I'm also linking it to the Weekend Cooking event at Beth Fish Reads, a weekly event that is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share. For more information, see the welcome post.
Happy Aloha Friday!


  1. You are lucky to live in Maui where the local goat cheese (at least from Surfing Goat Dairy) is so good! I loved it when I visited. But I love any goat cheese. I had soft white goat cheese with jam on bread for breakfast just this morning!

    best... mae at

  2. Your meal looks perfect! Appetizers are the best!!

  3. Cheese and olives - fab! Cheers

  4. Oh man, my favorite kind of dinner, especially for a warm evening. I love sound of both these and will probably steal this "meal" at least once this summer.

  5. Now you're making food on toast! Haha! I'm laughing because that's all I've been eating and all I've been posting. Funny enough, I have this recipe on my list, but I thought I needed to take a break from posting shrimp and food on toast for awhile.

    Good call cutting back on the black pepper. Whoa....that is a lot for me and I like it too! This is right up my alley!

  6. I also like pepper and can overdo it at times. Good tip about cutting back for this one. What a nice little spread here and I would love it for a light dinner. White wine for me too, please!


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