Date and Goat Cheese Bruschetta

Bruschetta is the perfect party hors d’oeuvre because its ingredients can be prepared ahead of time.
By: Matthew Mead and Linda MacDonald
Delicious Bruschetta Hors d'Oeuvre

Delicious Bruschetta Hors d'Oeuvre

Bruschetta is the ideal potluck dinner hors d’oeuvre because its ingredients can be prepared ahead of time and toted in resealable containers for quick on-site assembly. Start with a fresh baguette and experiment with different toppings: caramelized dates, tomato jam or red pepper jelly over goat cheese; salami or crumbled Italian sausage atop fresh pesto; crispy bacon over Boursin cheese; or finely chopped pistachios over honey-topped cream cheese.

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups chopped pitted dates
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/3 cup fresh orange juice (about 1 orange)
40 (1/2-inch thick) slices French bread baguette, toasted
5 ounces spreadable goat cheese (more or less as desired)
5 teaspoons finely chopped walnuts

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine first 4 ingredients in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer a few minutes or until tender. Remove from heat; cool to room temperature.
3. Cut bread into thin slices. Warm in oven for a few minutes until each side is crispy.
4. Spread goat cheese on toasted bread slices, then add the date mixture and top with walnuts. Serve warm. 

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