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Ricotta-Stuffed Bacon-Wrapped Dates

These are the new pigs in the blanket and way better. They're a classic tapas but they never get old. And I spruced them up just a bit with a touch of ricotta cheese.
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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 40 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: about 6 servings
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Ingredients

1 pound (about 12 to 13 slices) bacon, preferably thick-cut

25 Medjool dates (about 3/4 pound)

1/3 cup ricotta cheese

Special Equipment: toothpicks, a bamboo skewer for removing pits

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Cut the bacon in half lengthwise to make twice as many slices. Set aside. To remove the pits from the dates, cut the tips off each end of the dates and insert the flat end of the skewer until it pushes the pit out of the date. Repeat with remaining dates.
  3. Place the ricotta in the bottom corner of a strong plastic bag and seal tightly. Use scissors to cut a small hole in the tip of 1 of the corners. Now use the bag like a piping bag to fill the dates with the cheese.
  4. Wrap the ricotta stuffed dates with a slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick through the belly of the date. Arrange all the prepared dates on a parchment-lined baking sheet, allowing at least a little space between each one for good browning. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes or until bacon is browned and crispy. Remove from the baking sheet and gently remove toothpicks. Serve immediately.