I was talking with a friend recently about why cooking in the midst of busyness can be so wonderful. I know cooking isn’t for everyone, but for me, it has become a true hobby and a way of relaxation in the midst of the world feeling like it’s spinning out of orbit.
I sit so much at work, then often head straight to class to sit some more. If I don’t have class, I might come home to sit in front of the TV! Sometimes I wonder if my body is confused that I sit so much — but then (attempt to) run at full speed when I work out. I picture my body saying to me, “Can’t you just do something normal, in between the two extremes?”
Maybe cooking is that in between. My eyes are away from an illuminated screen and I’m getting to move around, focused on an activity. Grabbing this, mixing that. Creating something satisfying for Chris and I, or a group, to catch up over and savor together.
Today, I wanted to share a simple bacon-wrapped dates recipe. This was a dish I first discovered at Screwtop back in 2009 or 2010. I planned at first for this to be our appetizer for my dad’s birthday dinner a few weeks ago, but decided to go another route last minute. Then, I thought I’d serve the dates on New Year’s Eve, but didn’t end up needing them after all. The ingredients finally ended up getting put to use on New Year’s Day, when we got together to watch some football with my family. With an addicting mix of sweet and salty flavors, this is an appetizer that is quite hearty and decadent!
I like to fill the dates with goat cheese, but you can also use feta or blue cheese… even nuts! I’ve tried fancy bacon-wrapped dates drizzled with a balsamic reduction, but I am usually too impatient for this addition. Balsamic really takes the dates to a whole new level, but the simple richness of salty bacon, sweet dates, and melted cheese is enough for me!
Decadent little sweet-and-salty snacks.
Author: jacqueline anderson
Recipe type: appetizer
- 12 oz. package of bacon
- 30 dates
- 4 oz goat cheese
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Farenheit.
- Pit the dates by slicing into each one carefully and scooping the pit out with your fingers.
- Stuff each date with a few crumbles of goat cheese, then seal each one shut.
- Cut the slices of bacon in half.
- Wrap a half slice of bacon around each date.
- Lay the bacon-wrapped date seam-side down on a foil-lined pan sprayed with cooking spray or ideally, on a wire rack or slotted broiler tray sprayed with cooking spray set over a foil-lined pan -- to catch the grease.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, turning halfway through, until the bacon is cooked and browned.