Sweet and Savory Valentine Bites
Whether you’re hosting a festive Valentine’s Day party, or entertaining just for two, these recipes give you some sweet and savory choices that will set the mood for romance.
Scrumptious bites start with simple, flavorful ingredients – golden Calimyrna and dark purple Mission figs from California and Jarlsberg cheese.
Sweet, mouthwatering figs are not only packed with great taste, they’re full of fiber and essential nutrients, making them as good for you as they are good to eat.
The versatile taste and texture of Jarlsberg cheese is ideal for these appetizers. Jarlsberg’s mild, nutty-sweet flavor and buttery creaminess makes it a perfect partner to figs and, along with its excellent melting properties, adaptable to many sweet or savory dishes.
You can combine both ingredients in one easy sure-to-please appetizer: Make a slit in a fig and stuff with a piece of Jarlsberg. Wrap with partially-cooked bacon (it should be a bit limp) and heat at 400°F just until bacon is crispy and cheese begins to melt.
See more of my sweet and savory Valentine’s Day recipes here: /tag/valentines-day/
Chocolate-Dipped Stuffed Figs
- 15 Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid Figs
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1/2 cup brandy (or 1/2 cup water mixed with
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract)
- 15 to 30 small pieces candied ginger, toasted nuts or chocolate
- 5 to 6 ounces semisweet, bittersweet or premium white chocolate, chopped
- With sharp knife, cut small slit in bottom of each fig.
- In small saucepan, heat sugar and water over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Stir in brandy and figs. Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Drain figs, cool and dry thoroughly.
- Stuff one or two pieces of ginger, nuts and/or chocolate into each fig.
- Place chopped chocolate in 1-cup glass measuring cup or small microwave-safe bowl. Heat on medium/50 percent power until almost melted, stirring after every 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Remove from oven and stir until melted.
- Hold stem of each fig and dip in melted chocolate. Place figs, stems up, on wax paper-lined tray until chocolate sets. Decorate with white chocolate or nuts, as desired.
- Store in airtight container in refrigerator.
Makes 15 figs