Six ingredients are all you need to make this easy, show-stopping appetizer. In our experience, it's best to double the recipe; everyone loves this dish!
3/4 cup (6 ounces) goat cheese
1 tablespoon minced shallots
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
24 whole pitted dates
6 thin slices prosciutto
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°.
Combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a fork. Slice dates lengthwise, cutting to, but not through, other side. Open dates; place 1 rounded teaspoon cheese mixture into each date. Cut 1 prosciutto slice in half lengthwise and then crosswise to make 4 equal pieces. Repeat procedure with remaining prosciutto to form 24 pieces. Wrap each date with 1 prosciutto piece; place dates on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350° for 8 minutes or until filling is thoroughly heated. Serve immediately.
I've tried them with the big medjool dates (almost dessert like) and the small regular dates. I think the small ones provide better flavour, but the big ones look great and are so easy to work with. I've also used feta and goat cheese, we liked the goat cheese best. We have also done them plain, with prosciutto, and with a small piece of cooked bacon. We prefer them with bacon.
I've made these quite a few times, always a hit. When figs are in season I substitute them for the dates. The dates baked with the chevre alone are also wonderful for vegetarians. Deglet dates are smaller, lowers the calories by about half. I also find that pitting the dates myself is much quicker than I expected and enlarges the choices available for the dates.
I made these exactly as written. Very good, easy and elegant appetizer. I need to find larger dates next time. Prosciutto did not dry out; I was worried it would. It was easy to chew and had great flavor. Will make for Christmas!