Recently my workplace celebrated its 25th anniversary, and boy was it fancy! The lobby that usually welcomes eager staff members and corporate heavyweights alike, along with the adjoining business auditorium that hosted many an event were now transformed into Kingston’s newest nightclub. Well, at least that’s what it felt like.
Anywho, I somehow got involved in the planning process. It started when I was consulted on the alcohol line-up for the night’s proceedings. And no, I am not an alcoholic, but I was pretty adamant that there needed to be a bar, with a seating area, and white rum, and red wine. Again, I am NOT an alcoholic. In all of the excitement, the idea for a cheese station transcended my thoughts and landed on the ears of the planning committee. Suddenly it became a thing – my thing. Thanks Bev! I found myself negotiating cheese prices with a distributor, setting foot in strangers’ (yes, more than one) houses to source cheeseboards and fancy crockery, and coming up with a lavish but practical way to present all that was happening in my head.
In addition to a cheese plate (I ended up using white cheddar, pepperjack and muenster) I had an idea for a cheese dip of sorts. I’ve never attempted this before but I figured it couldn’t be that hard. And thankfully it wasn’t. Here’s how I did it.
- Three 8oz blocks of cream cheese
- Two 4oz packs of smoked marlin
- 4oz sour cream
- 1 large onion, roughly chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced
- juice from 2 limes
- handful of fresh parsley (flat leaf), stems removed, roughly chopped
- fresh dill, roughly chopped, about 2 tbsp
- salt & pepper to taste
- Accompaniments: pepper jelly, pesto, (flavoured) honey
- Ensure cream cheese and smoked marlin have come to room temperature so it’s easier to work with.
- In a food processor, add room temperature cream cheese, sour cream, onion, garlic, lime juice, parsley and dill and process well.
- Add smoked marlin and pulse to combine. Ensure not to over process.
- Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
- Transfer to a serving dish and allow to chill for at least 8 hours in order for flavours to develop.
This will yield quite an amount, so you can adjust the portions accordingly. I find this goes best with plain crackers, and the suggested accompaniments (pepper jelly, pesto and flavoured honey) make a good pairing. The spread improves on taste over time, so make it a day ahead. You can substitute your favourite fresh herbs, but the dill really elevated this recipe.
This recipe was a huge hit and makes for an impressive appetizer for any occasion! I’m still receiving compliments and recipe requests.
Oh yea, we had a GREAT time. Let’s leave that there.