Gorgonzola, Bacon and Chive Lollipops
Ingredients/Lollipops 1 lb gorgonzola, crumbled 6 strips smoked bacon 1 bunch fresh chives, finely chopped 20 lollipop sticks Method/Lollipops Cook bacon until golden brown, finely chop and set aside. Pour grease into a cup and reserve for Bacon Dust.
In a medium bowl, mix the gorgonzola and bacon pieces and mix thoroughly. Add half the chopped chives to the bleu cheese mixture and mix thoroughly, reserve the other half of the chive for garnish. Refrigerate the mixture, covered for at least 2 hours, then roll into 20 balls. Refrigerate the cheese balls so they will be firm. Ingredients/Bacon Dust 4 oz bacon drippings 1/2 cup maltodextrin kosher salt white pepper Method/Bacon Dust Put the bacon drippings in a food processor and begin to process. Slowly add the maltodextrin to create dust. Pass the dust through a fine China cap or tamis to remove lumps. Set aside. Ingredients/Chive Mist 1 bunch chives 1/2 cup chicken stock 2 misting bottles
Method/Chive Mist Puree the chives and stock in a blender until smooth. Strain through a fine China cap to get out any lumps that would clog a mister. Assembly Roll the gorgonzola balls in the remaining chopped chives. Put lollipop sticks into the cheese balls. Put the Bacon Dust in a shallow pan. Lightly tap each cheese ball in the Bacon Dust until the bottom is coated. Put more Bacon Dust on each service plate and place each lollipop on the dust. Place the mist bottle on the tray as the lollipops are passed and have each guest mist a lollipop before eating it. Chef Notes Don’t refrigerate the Bacon Dust; moisture will soften and liquefy it. Variations Other soft cheeses, like Port Salut or goat cheese, make a milder, subtly different hors d’oeuvre.