Disclosure notice: I was provided with free product by Castello cheese for the purpose of writing this post. All opinions stated within are my own.
It’s really not a secret around here that I have a weakness for cheese. Any kind of cheese. Despite being lactose intolerant, I add it to everything. It just makes stuff better. And that’s what those little Lactaid pills are for anyway, right?
One of my closest, oldest friends, Donny Vegas, has his birthday two days before mine. We’ve been having joint birthday parties since we were 18 (although we’ve been friends since we were 9!). This year was a milestone birthday for both of us so his wife, Blondie, decided to host a li’l party for the two of us. She’s a great hostess and the food at her parties is always fab-u-lous so it’s always something to look forward to.
One of her appetizers was a little blue cheese concoction served in endive cups. Now some people find blue cheese a little strong for their palettes but I would not be one of those people. I ate way more of those little endive cups than I care to admit. I even snuck back inside during the outside events to grab myself a few more!
So when Castello cheese asked me if I’d like to try some of their Blue Cheese and write recipe post as well, I couldn’t wait and I knew exactly what I wanted to make… only I totally wanted to change it around at the same time! And what’s better than a great appetizer recipe as we head into the holiday season?
Blondie happily obliged me with the recipe she used from Fine Cooking and that’s what I used as my base. I experimented with it a bit and wound up with a pretty tasty combo that included curry and bacon and a little extra apple than the original recipe called for. I found with the added bacon the sweet quotient from the apple needed to be upped a bit.
I had lots left from my three test batches I made so I stuffed some into some fresh figs, which was very tasty and also makes a great appy. But the surprise was when, as a lark, I mixed some in with some leftover stewed tomatoes and added it to warm pasta on a leftover mishmash night. It was so delicious in a very unexpected way! Creamy, tangy and the apple and nuts worked really well giving it some texture. So don’t be afraid to play with this one. It would be great on crackers or as a dip too!
- ¾ cup Castello Crumbled Blue Cheese
- 2 medium cooked slices of bacon, chopped fine
- 3 tbs mayonnaise
- 1 tbs lemon juice
- 1 tsp curry powder
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1½ large apples cored and roughly diced. Use a tart-sweet eating apple like Gala, Braeburn or Honeycrisp (what I used)
- ¾ finely chopped celery (about 2 large stems)
- ½ cup of chopped walnuts. Almonds or hazelnuts will also work
- 8 large leaves from a Romaine lettuce heart
- in a small bowl mix together the blue cheese, mayo, lemon juice, curry powder and salt until well combined. The mixture will still be a little lumpy – that’s ok.
- Set aside to let the flavours meld while you dice your apple, celery, nuts and bacon
- Place your diced foods in a larger bowl, add the blue cheese mix and combine well.
- Spoon the mixture into the Romaine leaves, plate and serve