Everything is better with bacon, including wine! In honor of National Bacon Day, we’re sharing Chef Alex’s famous recipe for bacon wrapped dates that you can easily whip up as an appetizer for any occasion. We suggest serving these at your New Year’s Eve party this year with sparkling wine for the ultimate holiday indulgence. You can also enjoy these dates year-round with a glass of red, like Petit Verdot or Syrah.
"Better with Bacon" Wrapped Dates
15 Medjool pitted dates
1 pound aged Manchego, cut into 15 blocks
5 slices bacon, cut into thirds
1/2 cup maple syrup
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Make an incision on one side of each date and insert a block of Manchego. Squeeze the date shut in your hand to secure. Wrap each date with a pieces of the bacon and secure with a toothpick. Place all dates on a sheet tray lined with a silicon mat or parchment paper. Roast the dates in the oven 5 to 6 minutes or until the bacon starts to crisp. Turn the dates over and continue to cook for 5 to 6 more minutes.
Remove the dates from the oven and brush both sides with maple syrup. Return the dates to the oven until they are crackly and sticky, about 1 to 2 minutes. Serve hot.