Marinated Goat Cheese Balls with Artichokes, Olives and Tomatoes

I got this recipe from the Food & Wine website in a French picnic slide-show. I made it for the sangria party night. I was especially interested in it because not only do I love all of the elements but the piment d’Espelette is a specialty of the Basque region near where I spent the first half of the year studying abroad. There I tried everything with the special chilli flavoring, from chocolate to cheeses.
summer bulgur-heirloom tomato salad

  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh goat cheese, softened
  • 2 tsp chopped rosemary
  • 2 tsp chopped thyme
  • 1/2 tsp piment d’Espelette pepper or hot paprika
  • salt
  • 1 quart evoo
  • 20 cooked baby artichoke hearts
  • 1 cup red cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
  • 1 cup Niçoise olives
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the pine nuts in a pie plate and bake for 10 minutes, or until fragrant and lightly toasted. Transfer to a plate and let cool.
  2. In a standing mixer, using the paddle, blend the goat cheese with the toasted pine nuts, rosemary, thyme and piment d’Espelette. Alternatively, blend the cheese in a bowl using a wooden spoon. Season with salt. Shape rounded tablespoons of the seasoned cheese into balls.
  3. Pour 1 inch of olive oil into a tall 1-gallon glass container. Layer the cheese balls, artichoke hearts, cherry tomatoes and olives in the container with enough of the remaining olive oil to cover. Let marinate at room temperature for 24 hours. Serve with the toasted baguette.

Original recipe: http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/marinated-goat-cheese-olives-artichokes-and-tomatoes

summer bulgur-heirloom tomato salad

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