Following on the heels of another big awards show, we present a stupefying hors d'oeuvre.
These little tidbits are piquant and snippy. At first your mouth feels slightly shocked, then all the sweet and sour of brined cheese, strong citrus and flowers make your feet move. Party food at its best—it just might make you tear up.
8 ounces ewe's milk feta (Bulgarian is best)
1 tablespoon lavender flowers, stems removed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 Korean cucumber
1) Cube the feta as best you can. If the cheese allows it, cut into 1/4-inch cubes.2) In a mixing bowl, gently toss the cheese with the lavender, oil and pepper. Let stand for at least 45 minutes.3) Slice the kumquats along their horizontal axis—1 fruit should yield around 5 slices. Add the fruit to the mixing bowl and gently toss to combine with the other ingredients.4) Slice the cucumber into 1/4-inch thick slices. Place 2 or 3 kumquat slices with the cheese mixture on each slice and serve.