Hope you’re enjoying all the details of our “Sweet as Honey” party, and thanks for popping over to check out the menu! Today’s backyard soirée is all about honey and sunshine, so this menu focuses on small bites that are sweet & simple. Follow the jump for all the recipes.
Rosemary Flatbread with Blue Cheese, Grapes & Honey
- 1 envelope active dry yeast
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 cups bread flour, plus more for rolling
- 3/4 cup warm water
- 2 teaspoons chopped rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 pound red grapes (1 1/2 cups)
- Coarse sea salt
- 3 ounces blue cheese, crumbled (1/2 cup)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon snipped chives
- In a large bowl, whisk the yeast and sugar with 1/4 cup of the flour. Stir in 1/4 cup of the warm water and let stand until slightly foamy, about 5 minutes. Add the rosemary, fine salt, pepper and the remaining 1 3/4 cups of flour and 1/2 cup of water; stir until a dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover and let rise in a draft-free spot until billowy and doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450°. Place a pizza stone in the bottom of the oven, and preheat for at least 30 minutes.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Press and stretch the dough into a 13-inch round, then transfer to a lightly floured pizza peel. Press the grapes into the dough and sprinkle with sea salt.
- Slide the flatbread onto the hot stone and bake for about 12 minutes, until the crust is golden and the grapes have begun to release some of their juices. Sprinkle the blue cheese on top and bake for about 2 minutes longer, until the cheese melts. Slide the flatbread onto a work surface and drizzle with the honey and sprinkle with the chives. Cut into wedges and serve.
Watermelon & Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Vinaigrette
- 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 4 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
- 3 cups cubed seedless watermelon
- 3 cups arugula
- 4 oz crumbled feta
- Combine lemon juice, vinegar, and honey in a small bowl. Whisk in olive oil, salt & pepper. Set aside.
- Combine watermelon, arugula & feta in a bowl; add half of vinaigrette and gently toss. Adjust seasoning to taste with additional salt and pepper, drizzle remainder of vinaigrette on top of salad, and serve. *serves 4
A Quick Guide to Pairing Cheese & Honey
*There’s nothing prettier than a big rustic cutting board with a variety of cheeses, honey & accompaniment. It takes a bit of know-how to get the perfect pairings…so here are the basics.
- Blue cheese is great with subtly flavored honeys such as alfalfa and clover due to the piquancy of the cheese and the mildness of the honey. Experiment with bold, stinky blues, since honey can cut spice and sharpness.
- Nutty cheese like Parmigiano-Reggiano and alpine cheeses like gruyere pair well with richer honeys like chestnut and buckwheat. The cheeses are firm enough to hold their own without crackers — just break off a piece & drizzle honey right on top.
- Creamy cheeses like goat cheese & brie are delicious with citrus honey. For a really fantastic presentation, try placing a honeycomb on the cheeseboard and pairing with a triple-cream brie.
Sparkling Mint Lemonade with Honey Syrup
- 1 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup Honey Simple Syrup (recipe follows)
- 3 cups water
- Mint sprigs
- 3 cups sparkling water or lemon Italian soda, cold
- Combine lemon juice, simple syrup, & water in a 1 1/2-quart pitcher, and refrigerate.
- Pour lemon-juice mixture into beverage dispenser, and add sparkling water just before serving. Garnish with lots of fresh mint & enjoy! *Makes 8 cups
Simple Honey Syrup
- 1 cup honey
- 1 cup water
Heat 1 cup honey and 1 cup water in a pan, stirring until simmering. Remove from heat, let cool, and refrigerate. *Makes 1 1/1 cups.
*Top image via Sunday Suppers.