Doubling Down On Protein Makes For Extra Savory Stuffed Dates

It's hard to imagine how bacon-wrapped dates could become an even better appetizer. The easy-to-prepare and even easier-to-eat delicacy has long been a go-to for parties and gatherings alike. Try adding chorizo next time you make a batch of savory dates to up the flavor and create a more filling, satisfying bite. Before you wrap your date in bacon, clean out the date by scooping out the pit and simply add your chorizo of choice to the center. You can go for a spicier chorizo or a milder one depending on the flavor profile you're looking for.

When prepping your dates, make sure the slice you make to remove the inside of the date doesn't extend too far — otherwise, you risk losing some of your fillings as you cook them. Before you add your chorizo to your pitted dates, you'll want to cook your chorizo meat. This is to ensure everything is fully cooked by the time you serve your appetizer. Cooking the chorizo before stuffing also ensures that you can drain the grease from the chorizo before assembling to give your dates better structure and integrity. When your chorizo is cooked, stuff each date with about a tablespoon of chorizo to avoid any overfilling and spillage. Then, wrap your dates with bacon, secure with a toothpick, and cook in the oven till the bacon is crispy.

Experiment with your stuffed dates

Chorizo isn't your only option to stuff your dates with. If you want a melty, salty bite, try stuffing your dates with cubes of cheese. You can also combine cheese with the chorizo to give layers of flavor and texture in a single bite. If you are looking for a vegan alternative to chorizo and bacon, you can forgo wrapping the dates in bacon and select a toasted nut to stuff in the center of the dates instead. Pistachios and almonds complement the sweetness of the dates and offer a crunchy contrasting texture. Other swaps include sausage, fresh herbs, or even going for a more unique cheese like blue cheese.

You can also opt to add a dipping sauce to go with your dates. A popular tapas dish is bacon-wrapped dates served with a roasted red pepper sauce. You can make your own red pepper sauce or get creative about what to pair based on your stuffing of choice. You could choose dips and sauces such as chimichurri, hummus, or a yogurt dip depending on the flavors you have in your date.