Thursday, March 26, 2015

Chorizo, Medjool Date and Apricot Bites | Friday Night Bites

The weekend is around the corner and you know what that means – it is Friday Night Bite time.  Oh how I simply adore the weekends – don’t you agree?  By the time the work week comes to an end on Friday, I am so ready to simply unwind with a great bottle of wine and tasty appetizers.

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This week I have a scrumptious appetizer that is simple to make that will have your mouth singing.  I came across this recipe several months ago and pinned it for later.  Later came and then it was the moment of truth – I had to make it. Of course I had to put my own twist on the original recipe. I have always had a love affair for puff pastry – I mean what is there not to love about butter and flour combined together to create a bite a heaven.  One of my bucket list items is to make puff pastry from scratch versus the frozen version.  Don’t hear me wrong, the frozen kind is really good, but the sense of accomplishment is what I am going after.

With this one bite delight of chorizo, medjool dates and dried apricots nestled inside a puff pastry cavern, you will reach for the next bite quickly after swallowing your first one.  It will transport you to Spain to an Andalusian tavern or tapas bar. The beauty of this appetizer is that it is simple, flavorful and the filling can be made ahead and reheated. I would suggest making the puff pasty cups close to serving time to keep the ultimate crispy texture.

You might be wondering what type of wine should I be pairing with these – I have just the answer. With chorizo, I will admit to wobbly knees with a great Spanish Rioja, Jumilla, or Priorat, made from Tempranillo, Monastrell, and/or Garnacha. The deep red and black fruit flavors of these wines, plus the hint of balsamic, curry, and fennel notes help this simple appetizer sing. Other Iberian wines such as those coming from Portugal's Dao or Alentejo are also delightful.

Chorizo, Medjool Date and Apricot Bites

Makes 16

1 Sheet of puff pastry
1 pound of Fresh Chorizo Sausage
1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
6 large Medjool Dates, pitted and diced small
¼ Cup Chopped Dried Apricots
½ Cup Toasted Pine Nuts
1 Tablespoon Minced Flat Leaf Parsley (for garnish)
Flaky Sea Salt (for garnish)
1 egg yolk + 1 teaspoon water

To prepare the puff pastry, let the sheet defrost and place on a cutting board.  Use a 2 inch round cutter to cut 16 rounds.  Place onto a non-stick cookie sheet.  Use a 1 ½ inch round cutter and place in the center of each round and gently press to make an indent of another circle. This will aide in removing the center to make way for the filling.  Mix the egg yolk and 1 teaspoon of water in a small bowl.  Using a pastry brush – brush each pasty round with the mixture.  For best results, place in the refrigerator for 15 minutes then bake.  Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove and let cool.  Gentle remove the center portion to expose the open center where the chorizo filling will go.

To make the filling, add the chorizo and cook over medium heat until thoroughly cooked.  Drain any extra fat dripping.  Add the diced dates and apricots and cook for another 2 minutes then add the smoked paprika and cook for one more minutes.  Add the toasted pine nuts and stir.  Divide the filling into the baked puff pastry shells and garnish with the sprinkle of the flat leaf parsley and flaky sea salt.

1 comment:

  1. Love Friday evenings. My husband and I "uncork" enjoy a good bottle of wine, and a spread of small plates. These chorizo with dates and apricots are delightful addition.

    Thanks for sharing!!



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