Heavenly dates

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gourmand 0

"This is a recipe that I came up with for a party I threw. I was sick and tired of the same old hour d'oeuvres and wanted something different. They are not only different, but refreshing, healthy and delectable. The layers of taste and texture, blend together beautifully. Try it, you will love it."
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1.5 hrs servings
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  1. The reason the recipe asks for dates with pits, is that they hold their shape better than pitted ones, which tend to get twisted and contorted in the packaging sometimes. And in this recipe it is important that the dates look good for aesthetic purposes.
  2. Begin by slitting the dates to remove the pits. Slit them so that they don’t cut all the way through and end up in two halves. Remove the pits and discard. After all dates have been pitted, insert a single pistachio into each date’s slit. Make sure the pistachio is secure and doesn’t wobble around.
  3. Transfer the softened cheese into a piping bag. The nozzle should not be so large that it busts the date wide open, but just enough to fill the slit. Now, pipe the cheese into the slits, making sure the pistachios are covered and the slits are filled. After all the dates are done, place them close together in a single layer on a plate or tray.
  4. In a saucepan, heat the orange juice, grated fresh ginger and star anise on high heat for 20-25mins. At the end of 20-25 minutes the volume of the juice should be reduced to half. When done, strain sauce and discard residual ginger and anise.
  5. Let the sauce cool to room temperature. Then drizzle the sauce over the platted dates, making sure each date is covered in the sauce.
  6. While the dates soak up the sauce, skin the honey/dew or cantaloupe (I personally like the honey dew’s green color for this recipe) and cut it long into wedges. With a peeler, peel the wedges along their sides not the outer curvature, so you end up with a clean, straight strip of fruit, kind of like a fruit rollup. If the strip is too big, cut it into a smaller strip that is as long as your middle finger and one inch wide. Make 24 such strips.
  7. Now, wrap each date in these strips, like you would do pigs-in-a-blanket and secure the loose end of the strip with a toothpick, making sure the pistachio does not get in the way of the toothpick.
  8. Arrange them on a platter and serve as hour d'oeuvres at a summer party.



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