How about that title, eh? I could have shortened it, but I couldn't decide which delicious descriptive word to take out. So, I left them all for one verrrrry long title. Let's start off by acknowledging that these tasty little finger foods are nothing new. There are so many variations of meat-wrapped dates stuffed with soft cheese out there on the internets. However, you can never have too much of a good thing, right?
I was first introduced to this appetizer when I was a server at The Luggage Room, a little pizzeria in Pasadena. They serve bacon wrapped dates, along with some of the best wood-fired pizzas. If you're ever in the neighborhood, let me recommend the Avocado Party pizza, but add fresno chilis. Trust me!
Back to the dates. After trying a few different methods, I landed on this method for the perfect version of this appetizer. They're salty, sweet, and tangy, and sure to be a hit at your next party or holiday gathering.
Prosciutto-Wrapped, Goat Cheese-Stuffed, Balsamic-Glazed Dates
- 1 lb (about 20) pitted medjool dates
- 5 oz goat cheese
- 6oz (10 slices) prosciutto
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tbsp honey
Preheat the oven to 375º. Line a baking sheet with foil, enough to cover the entire sheet and the edges.
If your dates aren't already pitted (mine weren't), take a paring knife and make a cut lengthwise to open one side and take the pit out. Fill dates with goat cheese by the teaspoonful. Give the dates a little pinch to close the tops. Cut the prosciutto slices in half lengthwise. Wrap each date with prosciutto and place them on the baking sheet.
Bake for 12 minutes. Meanwhile, mix the balsamic vinegar with the honey in a small bowl.
Take dates out of the oven, and pour the balsamic mixture all over them, while they are still on the baking sheet. The heat from the pan will help the mixture become more of a glaze, adhering it to the dates, and adding an acidic sweetness.
Let dates cool slightly before devouring them. I mean, placing them on a nice serving tray for others.