Pecan and White Bean Pâté

Makes about 2 cups.

Note: Serve this with crackers or bruschetta, or as a sandwich spread. It’s also good slathered on warm lavash and topped with roasted vegetables for a light meal. From Beth Dooley.

• 1 c. pecans

• 2 garlic cloves, chopped

• 2 c. white beans, cooked or canned and drained

• 1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

• 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice, to taste

• 1 tsp. salt

• 1/2 tsp. cumin

• 1 tbsp. fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried thyme

• Several grinds black pepper

• Generous pinch red pepper flakes

• Fresh thyme sprigs, chopped parsley or pomegranate seeds, for garnish

Directions

Put the pecans in a heavy, wide skillet set over medium heat and toast them, stirring frequently so they don’t scorch, until they smell nutty, about 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat. When the pecans are cool enough to handle, place them into a food processor fitted with a metal blade and process until they’re ground very fine.

Add the garlic, beans and olive oil and process into a smooth paste, stopping occasionally to scrape down the bowl. Place the mixture into a medium bowl and add the lemon juice, salt, cumin, thyme, black pepper and red pepper flakes. Check seasoning. Garnish with thyme, parsley or pomegranates. Serve with crackers at room temperature.