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by on November 29th, 2018

Baked Goat Cheese with Tomatoes and Pesto

Sailing, Sailing Over the Bounding Main!

Sailing, sailing we did back in August on a visit to our son’s house. We loaded the kids up and lots of yummy food and headed for the marina in Chicago. A long ride and it proved to be a good ride for grandson Oliver since he usually gets sick.  His mom did give him something so he wouldn’t get sick on the boat. See pictures below and what happened.

My daughter-in-law, Missy and I decided to try a cold version of a goat cheese appetizer we had at dinner one night at The Greenwood American Kitchen in Highwood –goat cheese mixed with pesto and baked until hot and bubbly and then topped with some heirloom tomatoes chopped and mixed with some more pesto and then sprinkled with some pine nuts. I like the hot version better because there is nothing better than hot goat cheese or any kind of bubbly hot cheese smeared on a piece of fresh bread or toasted baguette.

Ya know, don’t you, that Rosemary and the goat blog is named after a goat cheese recipe. It all started with a little roll of goat cheese being rolled in some finely chopped fresh rosemary and then it gets doused with some olive oil thats been infused with some more fresh rosemary. Serve that with some slices of warm baguette and you have a delicious, easy appetizer that will make you wanting more recipes made with goat cheese. So I thought nine years ago, what better name than rosemary and the goat for my food blog.

So, back to this recipe. The chef at Greenwood helped me with this recipe. I thought I had it right but after writing him, he told me how they make their recipe. If you love goat cheese, give this a try and if you like it, leave a comment below.

BLAST FROM THE PAST:  Talk about cheese, these Cheesy Bacon Caraway Toast are great for the holidays and last minute drop in guest.

Use as much goat cheese as you want. These small 5 oz. packages would be enough for about 4-6 people.

I beat my cheese and pesto with a spoon but Mark (the chef) told me they beat with a mixer. I will do that the next time I make it.

Mix some pesto with the chopped tomatoes. You will put some in the bottom of the dish with the cheese on top and then save some to put on top when the cheese comes out of the oven.

Put the cheese that you have whipped with the pesto on top of the tomatoes and bake at 350° for 10-15 minutes until hot and bubbly.

Drizzle olive oil on the baguette slices and toast in 350° oven until lightly brown.

Start spread the yummy, hot bubbly goaty cheese on those toasted baguettes.

So, I thought Oliver was get sick when he was steering the boat. He almost went to sleep at the wheel but minutes later he was stacking some zzzz’s.

It was a fun day on Lake Michigan.

This was the dish from Greenwood Grill in Chicago. Thanks to Chef Mark Newman I was able to recreate the appetizer.

 

Baked Goat Cheese with Tomatoes and Pesto

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. goat cheese or more
  • 1/2 c. pesto
  • 1 1/2 c. heirloom cherry tomatoes chopped small
  • 1 loaf French baguette sliced thin on angle
  • olive oil for drizzling on bread
  • 1/4 c. pine nuts toasted in dry skillet

Instructions

  1. Dice the tomatoes and mix with the pesto. Put about 2 tablespoons of the tomato/pesto mixture on the bottom of the baking dish.
  2. Season the goat cheese with salt and pepper and whip using an electric mixer until it is creamed like butter. Put the goat cheese mixture on top of the tomatoes in your baking dish. The restaurant pipes their cheese mixture into the dish. I just spooned it in.
  3. Bake at 375° with high fan “convection” until it starts to bubble on the edges. Put more of the tomato pesto mixture on top with some chopped parsley (I forgot that part) and I added in the toasted pine nuts. (Those didn’t make the picture though.)
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