One of my favorite appetizers to serve as a crowd pleaser is a goat’s cheese stuffed date wrapped in bacon. Here are some pointers to consider on the main ingredients before you start. 

  • Cheese: I used a halloumi inspired carabao’s cheese called Magdalloumi. The cheese you choose is up to you, but I always go for a goat’s cheese if available or any creamy cheese – like kesong puti, halloumi, or in this case, a carabao’s cheese. Alternatively, you can use cheddar cheese, commercialized cream cheese, Manchego, or even blue cheese. But I find that goat cheese gives you the gooeyness we all crave, as well as a bit of acidity to cut through the fattiness of the bacon. The Magdalloumi adds a hint of saltiness and texture to the caramel-like dates once baked.
  • Bacon: And when it comes to the bacon, the thinner the better. That will help you get the crispiness you want when they come out of the oven. You could also use thinly sliced serrano ham or prosciutto. And to those who don’t consume pork, turkey bacon is my pick.
  • Almond: For a healthier version, you can ditch the bacon, and optionally add an almond along side with the cheese. A hazelnut, pecan, or macadamia nut all work well too.
  • Toothpicks: Any reliable toothpick will do. An optional step to prevent it from burning up is soaking the toothpicks in water overnight (or an hour) before using in the oven or griller.
  • Sauce: There are countless sauce to pair with this dish. Personally, I prefer enjoying it without any dipping sauce. 

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Dates

Carlo
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 18 mins
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Mediterranean, Spanish
Servings 10 pax

Ingredients
  

  • 8-10 strip bacon prosciutto or serrano ham
  • 12 pcs large dates Medjool or Deglet Nour
  • 200 g Carabao's Milk or Goat's Milk or any cheese of your choice
  • as needed toothpick

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C)
  • To prepare the cheese, slice into small cubes just about the size of the dates to be used. Set aside and towel dry if needed.
  • To pit the dates, using a pairing or any sharp knife, slice lengthwise opening it in half and remove the seeds.
  • Carefully replace the seed with a small amount of carabao's cheese (and an almond if using). Press the edges of the dates to seal.
  • Wrap each date with a strip of bacon. Cut as required if too long and pierce with a toothpick to secure and seal.
  • Wrap each date with a strip of bacon. Cut as required if too long and pierce with a toothpick to secure and seal.
Keyword appetizer, bacon, dates, snack
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