Hors d’oeuvres are the epitome of fancy party food. A little dish typically served before a meal or between courses at a dinner party, they involve no fuss with cutlery as they are usually designed to eat by hand. First and foremost, appetizers are supposed to be pleasing for the eyes. This recipe for Italian-style hors d’oeuvres combines fresh goat’s cheese with tangy Parmigiano-Reggiano, sweet sundried tomatoes and buttery walnuts that will also satisfy your taste buds. What a perfect mouthful!
For 5 pieces
100g Parmigiano-Reggiano, shredded
50g soft goat’s cheese
3-4 pieces of sundried tomato (dry, not preserved in oil)
Handful walnuts, finely chopped
5-6 fresh basil leaves
A pinch of black pepper
What you’ll need:
Large kitchen knife
Small mixing bowl
Grater (for producing long, thin cheese shreds)
Silicon mould for mini muffins or cake pops (ø3.5-4cm)
Alternatively: 5 shot glasses (ø3.5-4cm, measured at the bottom) and a flat baking tray with non-stick paper
- For the Parmigiano nests, take a cheese grater that produces long, thin cheese shreds and grate the parmesan into a mini muffin or cake pop baking mould. Alternatively, prepare a flat baking tray with non-stick baking paper, and grate the parmesan on the surface. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 2-3 minutes at 160°C (fan) or gas mark 4 until the cheese is melted and bubbles but is not crisp yet. Cut the cheese apart into five pieces and quickly drape them over the upturned shot glasses and bake for several more minutes until crisp golden brown. If you have a mini muffin tray at hand, keep the cheese in the tray until crispy and most of the moisture from the cheese has evaporated. After the baking process, take them aside to cool.
- In a bowl, mix soft goat’s cheese, chopped sundried tomatoes and finely chopped fresh basil. Add a pinch of black pepper and stir well. Take a teaspoonful of cheese mix and roll into a ball. The mixture should make five balls altogether. Finely chop a handful of walnuts, and then roll each ball over the walnut crumbs until fully covered.
- Prepare a serving plate and place the Parmigiano nests on a few rocket leaves. Place a cheese and walnut bite in each nest. Drip some balsamic glaze on the plate for decoration. Serve immediately.
(Credit to: Castelli/Parmigiano for these beautiful recipes)