Red Pepper Walnut Knots 

You're two supermarket shortcuts away from a bakery-style treat.  

Red pepper walnut knots
Photo: Victor Protasio
Hands On Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 15 mins
16 knots

These gorgeous appetizers only look like they came from the hottest bakery in town. The secret is two supermarket shortcuts: puff pastry and jarred roasted red peppers.

Start by making a flavorful roasted-red-pepper-and-walnut mixture inspired by muhammara, a bright and nutty Middle Eastern dip. Spread that mixture onto store-bought puff pastry, and then slice, twist, and tie into knots before baking them to golden perfection. Once the knots are baked, that zingy spread flavors every bite. And don't be shy with toppings: sesame seeds, oregano, and flaky sea salt make this easy appetizer sing.


  • ½ cup drained jarred roasted red bell peppers

  • ¼ cup walnuts

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil

  • teaspoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)

  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin

  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 small clove garlic, smashed

  • 1 7.3-oz pkg frozen puff-pastry sheets, thawed

  • 1 large egg, beaten

  • Dried oregano, toasted sesame seeds, and flaky sea salt, for serving


  1. Process peppers, walnuts, oil, lemon juice, cumin, kosher salt, and garlic in a food processor until smooth, about 30 seconds.

  2. Unfold 1 pastry sheet on a clean work surface, and then press seams with fingertips to smooth them out. Spread half of the red-pepper mixture over the pastry, leaving a ¼-inch border, and then fold in half toward you, pressing the borders with your fingertips to seal.

  3. Place the pastry on a small baking sheet and transfer it to the refrigerator. Repeat Step 2 with the remaining pastry sheet and red-pepper mixture, and then refrigerate for 15 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F with racks in its upper and lower thirds. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

  5. Transfer 1 chilled pastry packet to a cutting board and, with longest side facing you, use a sharp knife to cut 8 (½-inch wide) strips. Pinch the short ends of 1 strip and twist. Tie the strip into a loose knot, tuck in its ends, and place on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining strips.

  6. Brush knots with egg and then top generously with oregano, sesame seeds, and flaky sea salt. Bake, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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