Fig (or Apricot) and Feta Appetizer

Fig (or Apricot) and Feta Appetizer

Here’s a holiday appetizer combining two of my favorite foods, dried Turkish figs and feta cheese. Adding bacon makes the result even more joyous. The appetizer is great spread on non-salty breads, like water crackers or baguette slices. An alternate fruit is dried apricots.

The recipe makes enough appetizer for 8 or more people. Serve unsalted crackers or baguette slices to spread it on.

1 cup dried figs (Turkish preferred) or dried apricots
1 cup feta cheese, drained and crumbled
3 strips fried bacon (optional)
1/4 cup orange juice (or 1 tablespoon frozen orange concentrate plus 3 tablespoons water)
1/4 teaspoon salt (less if using bacon), plus more to taste – feta varies on saltiness
A pinch of cayenne

Bacon version on right
Platter by Maria Dondero, Marmalade Pottery, Athens, GA
Cut the tough stems off the figs. Slice then chop fruit finely with a chef’s knife on a board, or chop by pulsing in a food processor. (If using dried apricots, chop by either method). Crumble the feta into tiny pieces, using the back of a fork. If using bacon, crumble then chop it finely.

Combine all ingredients and mix well. If too dry and firm, add a little more orange juice or water. Let sit for a few minutes, then taste the mixture. Add a little salt, if it tastes bland.

Let sit at least half an hour before serving, or better yet, refrigerate for hours to several days.

Shape into a mound on a decorative plate or small platter. Serve with water crackers or baguette slices to spread it on.

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