Olive, mozzarella and rosemary Christmas wreath

Posted on 20 December 2012

Inspired by a picture I pinned to my Pinterest festive board, I thought I’d expand on this lovely idea and create a wired-together rosemary wreath that can be rinsed off after Christmas and hung up to dry on a kitchen wall.

I’ve used green and black olives, baby gherkins, caperberries, cherry tomatoes, peppadews and beautiful bocconcini to make this wreath, but of course you could add anything you like to it – marinated feta, roast peppers and baby aubergines, rolled anchovies, sundried tomatoes, quails’ eggs, and so on.
I photographed this on a board because it looked so pretty against the white and then (because I wanted to take it along to a carols-by-candlelight evening at my sister’s house) transferred it to a big green platter. I tore the mozzarella balls into smaller bits to make sure everyone got a piece or two, and drizzled the whole wreath with olive oil, home-made pesto and plenty of black pepper.This is so easy to make. You need:

– about 32 twelve-cm end-sprigs of fresh rosemary
– a long length of bendy vine, stripped of leaves
– green florists’ wire
– pliers

I used a length of grape vine, stripped of leaves, but you could use any flexible branch from a non-toxic climbing plant.  A bent-into-a-circle wire coat-hanger covered in green florists’ tape would work too.

First bend the vine into a circle, using your biggest, most beautiful platter as a size guide. Twist the vine ends around the circle, and secure with florists wire.  Coax the circle into a neat shape if it looks a little wonky. Now, starting at the top, wire the rosemary sprigs onto the circle, their tips pointing slightly outwards, and overlapping one another by about two-thirds of their length (see picture below).

Put your wreath on its platter and arrange the cheese around the circle. Add all the other ingredients, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and milled black pepper.If you’re entertaining two days in a row, you can rinse off the wreath and put it in the fridge overnight to  ‘refill’ the next day.

For more Christmas recipe inspiration, join the Scrumptious SA Facebook page.

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