First of all, apologies to my sister, Ashley, who despises peppers, but for this show stopper appetizer to serve at the holidays- peppers are a must. I first came across this recipe over 10 years ago when I began hosting little cocktail parties for the Winter Park Crew moms each year. This was one of my favorite dishes to serve. It is simple to prepare, but looks impressive on the buffet. The original recipe comes from Celebrate The Rain, the beautiful cookbook from the Junior League of Seattle. I adore this cookbook and you will see many dishes on my blog based upon recipes I’d experimented with from Celebrate the Rain. This is not your mother’s Junior League cookbook- no cream of mushroom casseroles.
Smooth and tangy creamy goat cheese is warmed through with peppers dressed in a balsamic glaze is a perfect Northwest dish, but really- it is perfect for company anywhere. Use leftover baguettes from yesterday’s roasted pumpkin dish to scoop up the yummy cheese. Enjoy!
4 TBSP olive oil
1/4 cup diced green bell pepper
1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
1/4 cup diced orange bell pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced fine
2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped fine
1/2 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
1/4 tsp coriander seeds, crushed
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
kosher salt to taste
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
8 oz fresh chevre/goat cheese such as Ile De France , cut into 8 slices
3 TBSP toasted pine nuts
Toasted baguette for serving
Method, Serves 6, prep time 30 minutes, Bake time 15 minutes
- Pre- heat the oven to 300 degrees
- Lightly grease an 8-9″ baking dish. Set aside. Use a baking dish that is oven proof yet table worthy.
- Heat 1 TBSP of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Saute the garlic and peppers until just tender- about 5 minutes. Add remaining oil, herbs and spices. Season to taste with kosher salt. Remove from the heat.
- Layer the goat cheese slices, end over end, just overlapping and press down to form an even layer in the prepared baking dish. Spoon pepper mixture over goat cheese. (You can cover and chill the cheese up to 4 hours at this point and just heat prior to your guests arriving) .
Bake until warmed through- about 15 minutes. Sprinkle pine nuts over the top . Serve with toasted baguette.
- Note- If you do not have a mortar & pestle, place peppercorns, fennel and coriander seeds in a zip top bag and crush with a rolling pin.