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Extract taken from Christmas at River Cottage by Lucy Brazier (Bloomsbury, £22) Photography Charlotte Bland
Recipes
December 2021
Reading time 1 Minute

Just like their cousin, the devil on horseback, this hot canapé is an absolute crowd pleaser

I don’t just make them at Christmas but they do have a wonderfully festive air about them. Aim for three or four per person, depending on what other canapés you are serving.
Makes
24
Ingredients
  • 24 organic large dates
  • 200g soft goat’s cheese
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon or orange
  • 24 small sprigs of rosemary (5–10cm)
  • 12 rashers of good-quality streaky bacon
  • Sea salt and black pepper
Method
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/Fan 180C/Gas 6. Make a slit along the side of each date and extract the stone. Set the dates aside.
  2. For the filling, in a bowl, mix the soft goat’s cheese with the citrus zest and season generously with salt and pepper.
  3. Trim the leaves from one end of each rosemary sprig, roughly to halfway along, to make sticks. Cut the streaky bacon rashers across in half.
  4. Spoon a generous teaspoonful of goat’s cheese into each date cavity. Wrap a piece of bacon around each date and secure with a rosemary stick. Place on a non-stick (or foil-lined) baking tray.
  5. Bake the stuffed dates in the oven for 20 minutes or until the bacon is cooked as you like it. Transfer to a plate and serve still warm… although they are delicious cold too.
Extract taken from Christmas at River Cottage by Lucy Brazier (Bloomsbury, £22) Photography Charlotte Bland

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