Oh… my… word… these are unexpectedly amazing. They are taste explosions in your mouth. Don’t believe me… try them, seriously. I discovered these a couple of years ago and they are a go to for an appetizer you don’t have to cook but can look and taste extremely impressive. Try these once…
Once the grapes are totally dry get the cheese mixture out and put about a tsp on the palm of one hand. Grab a grape and using mostly your palms, push the cheese mixture all around the grape until it is covered.
Like this… this takes practice. I have made these several times. This is not what my first one looked like 🙂 Keep at it and by the 4th or 30th grape you’ll be in business!! This is why you want the grapes to be dry. If they are wet the cheese mix won’t stick. Place the finished grapes on parchment or waxed paper. You can do all this up through this step up to a day ahead. Store in an airtight container in the fridge until about an hour before you are ready to serve.
If you have refrigerated your grapes let them sit out for about 10 minutes to let the cheese mixture soften a bit so the pistachios will stick. You will need to crush about 1 1/2 cups of pistachio pieces. It’s good to have some larger pieces but mostly smaller bits. Put those bits into a bowl.
Drop in one grape at a time and roll around to coat. If the grapes have been chilled you may have to press the pistachio bits onto the cheese mixture a bit. Make sure they are well covered as pistachios are extremely tasty 😉
Once you are done covering all the grapes drizzle them lightly with pure honey. I suggest pure, raw honey from a local source. If you’re in my area and need a source, let me know and I’ll hook you up with the best 🙂
Next crack fresh pepper over the top. Pepper??? Yes, pepper. At first I thought that seemed like a bad idea but try one with and without and you will taste the depth of flavor it adds… just do it! Next poke a toothpick into each grape and prepare yourself for the accolades 😉
You will no doubt get several questions about just what they are. I like to avoid telling what is on the inside and let people guess 🙂 They are a classy appetizer and a great conversation piece as well. They take a bit of time but a very much worth it. Give them a shot!
6 oz goat cheese (chevre)
3 oz cream cheese
1 lb large red seedless grapes
1 1/2 cups pistachio bits
Ground black pepper
Wash grapes and drain well. Transfer to clean dry towel to dry completely. Mix goat cheese & cream cheese in small bowl and refrigerate until grapes are dry. Take tsp size mound of cheese mixture in palm along with one grape. Use palms to work cheese mixture around grape to coat completely. After all are coated you can store in airtight container in fridge up to one day ahead. Crush pistachio pieces and place in bowl. Roll cheese covered grapes in pistachio bits to cover. You may have to press nuts onto grapes that have been chilled. Place on serving plate and drizzle lightly with honey. Crack black pepper over grapes and insert toothpick into each one. Enjoy!