Parmesan Cheese Spread

Parmesan Cheese Spread Recipe

Woah - what a week. I'm sitting in the lobby of a hotel in New York, and quite a lot has unfolded since I last checked in. The short version is: I flew to New York for the James Beard Awards, and then (holy s**t) I won one. I'm making my way back home now, and my fingers are crossed that some of my photos from the past few days turn out. In the meantime, I'll leave you with this. It's a Parmesan spread I make now and then, one I like for a number of reasons. You grate good Parmesan whisper-thin into a pot. Then combine that with a splash of white wine and a big glug of olive oil. That's really it. It's one of those stupid-simple, homemade, tastes-really-good things you can make in no time. If it gets lost in your refrigerator for a week, no worries, it's that much better when you rediscover it. Once you've made this base, it can hang out in your fridge for a week, or two, - or even three. Ready to use whenever (and, on whatever) you like.

Parmesan Spread RecipeParmesan Spread RecipeParmesan Spread Recipe

It's also completely customizable on a whim. You can stir in any number or herbs, spices, dried or fresh fruits (before serving) to take the spread in whatever direction you like. I noted some suggestions in the recipe below. It's good on crostini, sandwiches, and tartines. It's good spread in the bottom of a tart crust. It's good drizzled with a bit of honey or as part of a cheese / antipasti platter.

Thanks again to everyone for the nice notes. Every one of them feels good to read. xo -h

Parmesan Cheese Spread

You're going to want to use a Microplane grater here - the finer and whispier the cheese is grated, the better. this is also a perfect fit for Pecorino cheese, and I've been working on an aged gouda version using a bit of IPA (India Pale Ale) in place of the wine you see here. You can take this general idea in many different directions.

2 1/2 cups / 5 1/2 oz / 150g finely grated Parmesan cheese
scant 1/4 cup / 50 ml extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup dry white wine

add in ideas: chopped dried figs, chopped dates, finely lots of chopped chives, lemon zest, or red pepper flakes, dried herbs, chopped sun-dried tomatoes

Combine the cheese, olive oil, and wine in a jar or bowl. Stir gently until it all comes together, then press the cheese down a bit into a flat surface. It will keep like this, drizzled with a layer of olive oil, for a few weeks refrigerated.

When I want to serve the cheese, I typically scoop out a bit into a separate smaller bowl or plate, and incorporate any add-ins (or drizzles) at this point.

Makes ~1 1/2 cups of spread.

Prep time: 5 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Comments

  • Congrats. How exciting! Your hard work and passion for your subject jumps off the page and the award is well-earned! Thanks for the inspiration!

    Rachel@FoodFix
  • Congratulations! And thanks for the great recipe too.

    Trish
  • Congratulations!!!

    Euna
  • you are so deserving. congratulations!! i can't wait to add this simple spread to my refrigerator pantry - perfect for when i come home from work, and need a little snack (+ beer!) before i start dinner. :)

    meliSsa
  • Congratulations Heidi, well deserved! :) Also, I can't wait to try this. I've been sadly lacking in "fun" cooking because I'm still figuring out how to balance work and our adorable 8-month old. Cooking has been limited to super quick, healthy as possible things. This looks like the perfect thing to get me back to trying more of your recipes!

    DawnSC
  • Congratulations!! I'm very excited for you! This award is one of the few that will follow you for the rest of your life.

    Ginnie Welsh
  • Congratulations! Such a well deserved honor. Love this cheese spread, too!

    Hannah
  • First of all, congratulations! Second, this recipe is so easy and amazing! Wish I thought of that before ;)

    Ana
  • Congratulations!! Well deserved!

    Catnip
  • Great books, well deserved award.

    Concetta
  • Congratulations! Your lovely photo with the caption "Favorites List (3.10.12)" shows white roses and the most scrumptious looking meringues. Do you have a favorite meringue recipe? Thanks!

    Susan
  • Congratulations, Heidi! What a well-deserved honor.

    Katie Githens
  • This looks fantastic! Congrats on the award!!

    Connie
  • Congratulations, Heidi, on your award!! So well deserved.

    Carrie
  • Congratulations on the award. Continued good luck to you! Thank you for all the great recipes!

    Jean
  • That is so incredible that you won! You are such an inspiration to me, I love everything you do. Thanks for your books and blog!

    Sarah
  • Congrats!!! OMG my fiance loves parm - he would put this spread on everything. Thanks for sharing!

    Ruth
  • I couldn't think of anyone more deserving than you to win this award. I've been reading your blog for years and have your cookbooks that I cherish. I'm a California gal too, living in Arizona (ugh) at the moment but hubby and I are moving back soon. Your cookbooks have helped me keep my sanity here, plus it's easy to find mesquite flour!!!

    cheri
  • congratulations! well deserved! keep up the good work---and i'm excited to see what your next venture is.....

    kris
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