The rapidly approaching holiday season, magical as it is, can be stressful when you are often entertaining and being invited to events. The large amount of cheer that goes along with these occasions can often be accompanied by the oh my gosh what am I going to make for THIS party thought.
In order to sail through the season, you need a repertoire of easy, delicious dishes that don’t take a lot of time or complicated ingredients.
Example: Bacon Wrapped Dates
- 3 ingredients
- 10 minutes of prep
- DELICIOUS savory sweet appetizer
They are so easy to throw together. You can even leave out the sugar, and they’ll be almost as good. The dates are so sweet, and they basically just melt under the sizzling bacon wrapping.
Sometimes when you bring these to a party people are sort of unsure. “What’s a date?” “You wrapped dates in bacon?” “Bacon wrapped what?”
Don’t worry, though. The second they try the rich, melty date wrapped in crispy applewood pork belly, they’ll no longer care what it is they’re eating. They’ll just want another.
Do be prepared to be recruited to bring appetizers to every holiday part for the rest of your life (don’t worry it’s a good thing…just more excuses to make delicious calorie laden food that won’t be eaten exclusively by you!)
Ok, let’s talk about this super easy process:
Pit all the dates. If you’ve never pitted dates before, just start ripping them in half, lengthwise and the seed will pop out. If you see any dates with black fuzzy-ness inside, toss them.
Cut a pile of six pieces of bacon in half
Wrap the dates in the half pieces of bacon.
Put the dates on the cooling rack, seam side down.
Sprinkle them with sugar!
Put them in the oven.
Take them out, flip them, and skewer them with tooth picks.
Put them back in the oven.
Be hailed as the greatest chef in all the land.
One of the best tips I got when learning how to make these was to use a cooling rack in the oven, rather than just putting them on a flat pan. They come out much crispier when the fat is allowed to render away from the dates, rather than just in a surrounding pool.
If you have a nonstick cooling rack, than your life just got even easier.
Look at all that sugar. It’s going to melt and mix in with bacon fat to make an irresistible glaze on the tops of these bad boys.
I opt to put the tooth picks in after the first part of baking, right after they are flipped. Doing it like that means the toothpicks don’t get in the way of the sugar glazing process. But really, you can do it either way.
Also, feel free to triple, quadruple, or quintuple (can you even use that word like this?) this recipe. I only made 12 because I don’t have a party to go to this weekend, so Taylor and I are doing work on these all by ourselves!
I just wouldn’t try to fit more than 24 on one standard size cooling rack.
- 12 medjool dates, pitted
- 6 slices of thick cut, applewood smoked bacon, each slice cut in half
- ¼ cup coconut sugar (you can substitute brown sugar)
- *12 toothpicks*
- Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
- Line a standard size jelly roll pan with parchment paper, and place oven safe cooling rack on top of parchment paper.
- Wrap each date in a half strip of bacon. You want the seam to be underneath the date, touching the cooling rack. Press each date firmly with the seam side down, so it is a little flat on the bottom. This will help the dates not to roll around and unravel in the oven. You can skewer them with toothpicks now, or after the first session of baking.
- Once you get them all on the cooling rack, sprinkle with sugar. Don't be afraid to pile it high. A lot of the sugar will melt off in the oven.
- Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, remove from the oven, flip with tongs and skewer with toothpicks if you haven't already.
- Bake again for 10-15 minutes or until they are browned and crispy on both sides.
*Nutrition information for 2 dates*