It’s the season of decadence. And I am all about making decadent things with an unpredictable combination of ingredients. Nothing says this more than my goats cheese stuffed dates with candied bacon and walnuts. It might be a mouthful to say, but it’s even more of a delicious mouthful to eat!
Goats cheese stuffed dates
There’s a few reasons why this recipe works. The walnuts add a lovely texture and the nuttiness is an unexpected pop. The bacon is always a welcome addition, but candying it complements the sweetness of the dates. And then, the goats cheese is sharp and cuts through all the sweetness of the other ingredients.
It might sound like a lot of contrasting flavours but they really do all come together.
Candied bacon seems to be a popular technique over the pond in the States and Canada. However, for my Australian readers, this might seem like a foreign concept. But, it does work. It’s the ideal combination of sweet and savoury. You just need to cook the bacon in some maple syrup and let the sugariness cover the salty bacon.
What sort of goats cheese?
The best cheese to use for this one is very soft. For those in Australia, the famous Meredith’s goats cheese is the perfect texture for this sort of recipe.
You just want it soft enough to add into the small date crevice.
Is this tricky to make?
It sounds a lot more complicated than it actually is. It just takes good knife cuts on the dates. I recommend using a very sharp blade.
If you have any questions or would like to leave a review, please do so here! I always love answering your food and recipe related questions and hearing your feedback on my recipes.
Images by Alanna Penna Photography.
Goats cheese stuffed dates
- 20 dates
- 250 g bacon diced
- 40 g walnuts roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp rosemary finely diced
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 250 g goats cheese
- 1 orange zest
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees C / 350 degrees F
- Using a sharp knife, slice the dates lengthways and remove the seed. Ensure you do not split the dates in half. Discard of the seeds and set the dates to the side.
- In a cold pan, add the bacon. Turn the heat to high and cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the walnuts, two thirds of the rosemary, maple syrup and brown sugar to the pan with the bacon and cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the bacon is crispy and you have a jammy consistency.
- In a food processor, combine the goats cheese, two thirds of the orange zest, olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Blend until smooth and well combined.
- Stuff the dates with roughly a teaspoon of the goats cheese mixture and lay them onto a baking tray or into a baking dish. Sprinkle the candied walnuts and bacon mixture all over. Bake for 10 minutes.
- Sprinkle over the remaining rosemary and orange zest and serve immediately.