Thursday, February 17, 2011

Prosciutto Wrapped Dates - Datteri Ripeini

Lately, hors d'oeuvres are all I crave. No soups, salads, or entrees. Nope, I just want snack bites of little yummies. I make myself eat salad and stew because I feel better when I have a more balanced diet, but temptation does get the better of me and then I turn to my favorite seducer: prosciutto.

Mention the word "prosciutto" and I'm yours. Wrap it around a sweet and savory little package like dates stuffed with cheese or just herbs and I will pledge myself til the stars go cold and the sun plummets to earth.

It turns out this is a classic Italian dish - Datteri Ripeini. It is not surprising since Italians really know how to put together an amazing combination of flavors with the most basic of ingredients - rosemary, cheese, prosciutto and dates. All items that would probably be available outside your backdoor if you lived in prosciutto land.

I have to admit that the stuffed dates to the right look like little bugs, which could be enticing if you wanted to have fun within it! Although they do not photograph well (I was happy to notice that other boggers' photos were just as unappetizing)  do not be fooled. They are killer. And so simple to make, it is almost a crime that I have only just discovered them. These are perfect for parties since they need to rest at least 10 minutes after removing them from the oven, and they can be made ahead of time, put them on your next cocktail party menu and enjoy!

Prosciutto Wrapped Dates with Rosemary Cream Cheese

12 dates
4 oz cream cheese (or neufchatel)
1 tablespoon rosemary, minced
6 slices prosciutto, cut in half lengthwise

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice dates open but not completely in half and remove pit. Mash cream cheese if using and add rosemary. Stuff each date with 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of herbed cheese; overstuffing is ok. Wrap each date with some prosciutto and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 30 minutes and allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving.


Recipes currently inspiring me:

Upside Down Pear and Caramel Cake at Talk of Tomatoes
Kasha Varniskes at Chez Cayenne
Chick Pea, Quinoa, Spinach Salad with Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette at The Perfect Pantry

1 comment:

The Food Hunter said...

I've had bacon wrapped dates but never proscuitto. I will try this next time for sure.