This Whipped Goat Cheese with Candied Bacon & Jalapeños is one of my newest favourite appetizer recipes. Topped with thyme honey and spread on toasted ciabatta, it's sure to become one of your favourites too.
I can't even communicate how good this appetizer is but I will try. It's super creamy, honey-sweet, salty, and refreshing, all spread on crispy toasted ciabatta, and just the perfect appetizer that you'll likely fill up on before our supper.
Although I fully encourage you to make fancy dishes for yourself whenever you're feeling it, I think this would make a great appetizer to serve the next time you have guests. It's quite easy, quick, and doesn't require an excessive amount of ingredients but will taste like something you'd order at a high-end restaurant.
Whipped Goat Cheese with Candied Bacon & Jalapeños
5-6 slices of bacon, chopped into 1-inch slices
2 jalapeños sliced and seeded
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3 tablespoons of fresh thyme, picked off the sprig (or 1 tablespoon dried thyme)
1 ciabatta loaf
10-12 ounces of goat cheese (280-300g)
4 ounces cream cheese (can be subbed with greek yogurt)
2 tablespoons olive oil
pinch of salt
¼ cup honey, warmed
Preheat your oven to 400°F and line a large baking sheet with tin foil.
Slice the bacon slices and jalapeños. In a medium bowl, add the bacon, jalapeño slices, brown sugar, and 2 tablespoons of thyme. Use your hands or a spatula to coat the jalapeños and bacon.
Place the bacon and jalapeños on the baking sheet and ensure the bacon isn't overlapping, though it's fine if the jalapeños are on top.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the bacon is crispy around the edges.
Meanwhile, slice the ciabatta horizontally in half, then slice them into 1-inch wide pieces (as pictured). Place crust down on a baking sheet and place in the oven to toast. You can put these right beside the bacon sheet in the oven if they both fit and toast for the last 3-5 minutes.
Blend the goat cheese, cream cheese, olive oil and salt in a blender or food processor until smooth. Scoop into a serving bowl (preferably wide and shallow) and smooth with a spoon.
Add the candied bacon and jalapeños on top of the goat cheese and drizzle with honey. Use the ciabatta to dip in the goat cheese and enjoy!
Let me know in the comments if you try this one out. You will not be disappointed!