I love mixing sweet and savory flavors in an appetizer, and these bacon wrapped dates and apricots are the perfect balance. These are one of my most popular appetizers that I love serving around the holidays. Even if you don't prefer bleu cheese, just take one bite and you'll fall in love -- trust me!
· 1 (12 oz.) Pack of Pitted Dates
· 12 Dried Apricots
· 1 Pound of Center Cut Bacon
· 6 Ounces Bleu Cheese
· 3-4 Tablespoons Honey, for drizzling
· Toothpicks, for serving
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.
2. Using a small paring knife, cut the dates in half on one side. (Be careful not to cut all the way through). Cut the apricots the same way.
3. Cut each of the bacon slices into 3 equal pieces.
4. Take one teaspoon of bleu cheese and stuff it inside the date. Using your fingers, press the date back together and wrap the date with half a slice of bacon. Secure the bacon with a toothpick. Repeat the same steps with the apricots.
5. Arrange the dates and apricots evenly on the lined baking sheet.
6. Bake for 10 minutes and remove from oven and flip each side over and return to oven and bake for an additional 5-7 minutes until nice and golden brown.
7. Transfer onto a clean sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with honey while warm.
· When wrapping the dates and apricot with bacon, keep the bacon side facing down.
· You can substitute the gorgonzola cheese for goat cheese or mascarpone cheese.
· Make sure that the pits are taken out of the dates.