Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Cucumber Slices Stuffed with Feta and Pine Nuts

I know I learned a lot during Egg Week and I hope you did too!

Very soon we'll be announcing our next winner in our Secret Ingredient contest. It's not too late to send us your ideas and you could win .... chocolate!

Send us your suggestions at MysteryLoversKitchen@gmail.com and sign up to follow our blog. It's that easy. We'll be choosing the next winner very soon!

In the meantime, I thought I would share this recipe with you. As I've mentioned before, I'm fortunate to have a "Ghost Chef" for the White House Chef novels. Thank goodness! She's great, and very creative. Still, when this recipe originally appeared in STATE OF THE ONION, I have to admit I never thought I'd like it.

The Tinley Park Public Library and Caffe Milan, however, changed my mind when they served these as part of the holiday book discussion dinner in December. The caterer followed this recipe and loved the outcome so much that she's added these slices to her regular menu. I can see why. They were an enormous hit at dinner. I can't even tell you how many people said, "And I thought I didn't like feta cheese!"

When I made these, they didn't "stick" together too well, so I added an extra dollop of mayonnaise. Problem solved. These make a great veggie appetizer... they're light and full of flavor. And they're pretty, too!

Cucumber Slices Stuffed with Feta and Pine Nuts

½ cup feta cheese, crumbled

2 tbsp. mayonnaise

3 drops Worcestershire sauce (I used vegetarian Worcestershire)

¼ cup toasted pine nuts, chopped

1 clove garlic, crushed and finely chopped

½ tsp. dried dill weed.

Salt and cracked pepper to taste.

¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Three large chilled cucumbers, sliced thinly

Kosher salt

Combine cheese, mayo, Worcestershire sauce, pine nuts, garlic, dill, salt, and pepper. Spread filling between two slices of cucumber. Place on platter. Continue until filling and cucumber slices are gone. Garnish with chopped parsley and sprinkle with salt. Serve cold.

Maybe I'm just in a hurry for better weather, but don't these have a Spring-y look to them?




  1. They do look like spring, Julie! And I love the idea behind these...sort of like a cucumber sandwich, but without the bread! I've got book club coming up in a week and these look like they'll be perfect for me to serve!

    Mystery Lovers’ Kitchen
    Mystery Writing is Murder

  2. Have fun with them, Elizabeth! I wouldn't have expected to like them, but I love 'em. My girls and husband do, too. We served these at Christmas and by the time we had them put together, we almost didn't have enough to put out on the platter... we'd consumed so much! But that was okay, since it was just all of us there anyway ;-)

  3. Elizabeth, my first thought was cucumber sandwiches, too! They're very clever, especially for vegetarians and those who can't eat gluten. Bet they'd be good with Boursin, too!

    ~ Krista

  4. These look wonderful!! Elegant...and delicious.

  5. Kirsta - I was thinking "gluten-free" too, as I was making these. Forgot to add that in my post. But I'll bet Avery picks up on it, too! I have to tell you, I'm way more aware of gluten issues thanks to her posts.

    Mary - thanks for stopping by. They are lovely, aren't they? When the caterer made them, hers looked better, but these aren't too bad either ;-)


  6. The crisp crunch of cucumbers always seem to transport my thoughts to warmer weather. I really can't resist them when combined with feta!

  7. Just the other day, I was eating a Greek salad that someone had made for me. Amid the greens and Feta and olives were cold, crispy cucumber slices, and I realized that I hadn't added cukes to my own salads in some time. I just got out of the habit of purchasing them. I now have two beautiful, crispy cukes in my veggie bin waiting to try this recipe. I can just see Jackie O. eating these dainty little cuke sandwiches with her pillbox purse on her arm, having just removed her white gloves. Cheers!

    author of The Coffeehouse Mysteries
    Coffeehouse Mystery.com
    “Where coffee and crime are always brewing…”
    Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  8. I do a lot of BBQs in the back yard, and this is a perfect little dish to have ... saving this for summer,, but you will see it!

  9. Did I really spell Krista's name wrong in the comment above? Gak! Just noticed it. Sorry Krista!

    Janel - weird as it is, I am not a fan of cukes in things. I like them like this, or on bread-based cucumber sandwiches. And I love a good cucumber dressing. But cukes in salads or in other dishes just don't work for me. And I often forget to ask restaurants to keep them off my salad.

    Cleo - what a great image. Jackie or now Michelle O. in the Rose Garden taking teensy bites of cucumber sandwiches. Maybe I'll add these in again in an upcoming WHChef story ;-)

    Grill-man! I look forward to it. You have some awesome parties! Wish I could join your group! I'd bring a platter of these to share!


  10. Not a big fan of cucumbers so I'm going to try it with celery instead!

    Just finished State of the Onion and loved it!

    Cheli's Shelves

  11. Hi Cheli!
    Thank you so much! Glad you enjoyed Onion! You'll have to let me know how this works with celery. Sounds delicious!

  12. Hey, you guys! You know that Sugar Doll Blogger Award you gave me, and I had to list ten things about me? The Chicago Sun-Times picked it up. Now all of Chicago knows about my life, including that I make a mean cherry pie. (cracking up). It just doesn't seem like the kind of syndicated column that would be picked up. Thanks, again! (I think.)

  13. Lesa,
    That's a hoot!

    I love cucs and feta and pine nuts -- this is just
    perfect for me! Thanks!