Happy New Year Everyone!
It always seems that life gets much busier this time of year, there are all of the holiday get-togethers with friends and family….. then the New Year’s celebrations kick in to full swing, and of course my husbands favorite events, football and more importantly the Superbowl. This translates to lots of cooking and creating time saving scrumptious finger foods that can be whipped up at a moments notice.
A new recipe fresh from our kitchen is Crunchy Goat Cheese Bites. These little goat cheese bites are crunchy on the outside and with a soft pillowy center. Better yet, they are super easy to make, absolutely delicious, and are even gluten free!
ShopRite offers a variety of gourmet goat cheeses. For this recipe you are going to use a Chevre Goat Cheese. Read the ingredient label thoroughly and if in doubt whether a particular goat cheese is completely gluten free, contact the manufacturer.
You will also need certified gluten free brown rice flour and gluten free crunchy rice cereal, like rice chex. To make delicious, crunchy and budget friendly gluten free panko rice crumbs, simply grind the cereal in the food processor until it has become the texture of course sand. If you don’t have a food processor handy, add the crunchy rice cereal to a food storage bag, remove as much of the air as possible, seal it and crush the cereal with a rolling pin. Season with freshly ground sea salt, and black pepper. Easy Peasy!
CRUNCHY GOAT CHEESE BITES
1/2 cup certified gluten free brown rice flour, seasoned with 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup of crispy rice cereal, ground to the texture of course sand in a food processor (or place in a food storage bag and crush with a rolling pin), seasoned with 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 jumbo eggs, beaten
11 ounce log of Chevre Goat Cheese (make sure to read the label to make sure that particular brand is gluten free)
1 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons local honey
1 bunch of organic scallions, white and green part sliced
sprinkle of freeze dried jalapeno peppers, or 1/4 red pepper flakes
Combine gluten free brown rice flour, Himalayan salt, ground black pepper and 1/8th teaspoon ground nutmeg together in a small bowl. In a another bowl combine the homemade gluten free panko, Himalayan salt, ground black pepper and 1/8th teaspoon ground nutmeg. *Quick Tip: Adding the ground nutmeg to both the brown rice flour and gluten free panko adds a deeper layer of flavor throughout the bite, and is your secret ingredient.* In another bowl whisk together two eggs until they are fully combined.
Using a small ice cream scoop (1″ diameter) or a tablespoon scoop the goat cheese into bite size balls. Roll each goat cheese bite in the seasoned brown rice flour, then dip into the beaten eggs until coated thoroughly, then into the seasoned homemade gluten free panko until thoroughly coated (you can gently press the panko into the goat cheese ball). Place coated goat cheese ball on a plate. Repeat this process until you have coated all of your goat cheese bites. Once completed place goat cheese bites in freezer for 10-20 minutes until firm. This helps keep the goat cheese intact while sautéing. *Quick Tip: Once the goat cheese bites are firm you can store them in your freezer in a freezer bag for up to 2 months. This way when unexpected company pops in, you pop these tasty little bites into the pan!”*
In a large sauté pan with at least 2″ sides, add 1/2″ olive oil. Heat to about 300 degrees over medium high heat. Sauté goat cheese bites for 1-2 minutes per side or until lightly golden brown. Remove goat cheese bites with a slotted spoon or tongs and place on a brown paper bag or paper towel lined plate to remove excess oil.
Place the crunchy goat cheese bites on a fun and festive platter. I like to arrange the bites in a simple pattern. Lightly drizzle the honey across the goat cheese bites and then sprinkle with chopped scallions and jalapeno peppers.
To show you just how easy this recipe is, I made you a video with step by step instructions: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IjVCbQV-3xg
The Crunchy Goat Cheese Bites turn an ordinary roasted beet and goat cheese salad into an extraordinary culinary experience.
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