Benedictine (the spread not the drink)

Apparently Benetictine is to Louisville KY, what pate is to Paris or baked beans are to Boston. It’s history can be traced back to a caterer called Jennie Benedict, who wrote The Blue Ribbon Cookbook. Benetictine is omnipresent at Louisville parties, where it is served in the form of tea sandwiches, often paired up with crisp slices of bacon.

We were curious so we made some yesterday. It made a really nice hors d’oeuvre or snack dip. Here we make tea sandwiches, but Benedictine can be served on top of cucumber slices or as a dip with sticks of cucumber.

Benedictine Spread

Ingredients:

  • 1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded and grated
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons shallot, grated
  • kosher salt
  • white pepper
  • Tabasco sauce, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons dried dill weed
  • white bread slices
  • mayonnaise

Method:

1. Place the cucumber and shallot in a fine sieve set over a bowl. Add a few pinches of salt toss and place in the refrigerator to drain for 2 hours.

2. Transfer the cucumber and shallot to a bowl and discard the collected liquid.

3. Add the cream cheese, a bit more salt, the white pepper and the dill. Combine stirring vigorously. Add a few drops of Tabasco to taste.

4. Place in the refrigerator to cool.

5. Using a cookie cutter cut rounds from the bread slices.

6. Using a rolling pin, press the rounds down until they are about 1/4″ thick.

7. Before serving, spread a layer of mayonnaise on a bread round, add a dollop of the Benedictine spread and place another round of bread on top.

 

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