What I have for you today are two appetizer (appeteaser) recipes that are fancy enough for a new years party and easy enough for a night in with a few friends!
The first: Prosciutto Wrapped Manchego Stuffed Medjool Dates
I first had these at 9th Door in Denver, a spanish tapas bar that I went to with this charity case friend/person I know, Kameron (justkiddingloveyoukammyyyy). They're super easy to recreate because there isn't any special trick here. You can count the ingredients with three fingers. Manchego is a creamy, bitter, hard cheese that melts very well. It is the perfect compliment to sugary dates and salty prosciutto. These are great straight out of the oven, but great at room temp as well.
The second: Goat Cheese, Pistachio, and Raspberry on Endive
I love the color of these! I first had goat cheese and endive together during apertivo at a bar in Turin, Italy. Aperitivo, if you have never heard of it, is like italian happy hour, but one million bajillion times better. At the place I went you just had to buy a drink and they had this huge spread of small bites to snack on. But they weren't just like chicken wings and bar nuts, they had fancy ass shit like goat cheese and endive with raspberries! It was amazing. I think I'd like to die from aperitivo overdose one day.
So, without further ado, I bring you said recipes.
Prosciutto Wrapped Manchego Stuffed Medjool Dates
Makes 15, 2 WWP+ each, 1 WW P+ for two if you go meat free or don't like prosciutto :)
- 15 medjool dates, pitted
- 2 oz manchego cheese, cut into tiny, date size pieces for 15 dates
- 4 oz prosciutto
- Toothpicks for serving
- Preheat oven to 400 F
- Remove rind from manchego cheese if necessary
- Pit dates by slitting one side and popping out the pit and any remaining stem
- Stuff in cheese and squeeze back together
- Wrap a small thin slice of prosciutto around the date.
- The prosciutto should wrap around the date 2-3 times
- Place on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes
- Remove from oven, turn each date, and bake for another 5 minutes
- Remove from oven, let cool for a few minutes so cheese can reset, pierce with toothpicks, and serve in a bowl
Those little suckers are delicious. And a really good trick to have up your sleeve. They're not cheap and they're not healthy, but they are awesome. So save them for something or someone very special. Like NYE! Or feed them to your guinea pig (read: boyfriend) if you're just making them for blog material.
Moving on to something healthier!
Goat Cheese, Pistachio, and Raspberry on Endive
Makes 24 Pieces, 1 WWP+ / 2 pieces
- 24 Endive Leaves
- 4 oz goat cheese
- 4 oz greek yogurt
- 1/2 tsp fresh chopped rosemary
- 1/2 tsp lemon zest
- 1/2 cup roasted, unsalted pistachios, processed or finely chopped
- 1 pint fresh raspberries
- Ziploc freezer bag or piping bag
- In a bowl, fold goat cheese and greek yogurt together
- Season with rosemary and lemon zest
- Line a cup with a plastic bag with top folded over. This will make filling the bag or piping bag a lotttt easier!
- Spoon in the goat cheese mixture
- Squeeze mixture to one end, squeeze out the air, seal the bag, and snip the corner about 1/4"
- Place pistachio crumbs in a shallow bowl
- Prep endive by cutting off base and selecting the best leaves. If your endive is a little sad and wilty, shock it in an ice bath to wake it up and blot dry with a towel.
- Pipe filling into endive as so
- Dust with pistachio crumbs
- Pop on 2-3 raspberries
- Try not to eat them all before you serve them to your peeps
This recipe is super light and refreshing! I'm not sure how I lived before I had greek yogurt, since it is the ingredient of the gods. It really lightens up this recipe, not only calorically, but tastefully. Pistachios have a naturally sweet flavor that contrasts perfectly with the bitter endive and sharp goat cheese. The greek yogurt adds a particular tang and lightness to the whole mix. The raspberries not only look awesome, but add a juicy, fruity punch of flavor. These are a tad bit of work, but they don't require an oven or stove, so they are easy in that way. Definitely worth the elbow grease!
Well that's it for 2011, peeps.
It's been a crazy, crazy year. One that I will look back on like this: holy shit, did that really happen? I mean, within 365 days, all that shit happened?
I've been through a whole lot of changes this year, closed some chapters, started some new ventures, and made a lot of memories. I started this little bloggity blog, which though small and kinda embarrassing, I appreciate that you are reading it. Both of you. Hi Mom and Sister.
Anywho, here's to hoping that 2012 is maybe not as eventful, but just as memorable! Happy New Year!