Devils on Horseback

Devils on Horseback
There’s no denying that bacon-wrapped anything promises “yum.” At Minneapolis gastropub Victory 44, the traditional British appetizer “devils on horseback” comprises dates that are stuffed with blue cheese and bundled in bacon. The restaurant’s modern take on these sweet and savory flavor bombs comes drizzled with blue cheese sauce and ginger-date purée. You can try it at home, fancy squiggles of sauce optional.

Makes: 6
6 large pitted dates
3 strips bacon
1/4 cup crumbled smoked blue cheese
2 wooden skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
Bleu Wiz (see below)
Ginger-date purée (see below)
2 tablespoons candied almonds
1 tablespoon finely chopped chives

Bleu Wiz
Makes: 1 1/2 cups
3/4 cup whole milk
3/4 cup shredded processed white American cheddar
3/4 cup crumbled smoked blue cheese

Ginger-date purée
Makes: 1 cup
1 1/2 cups pitted dates
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 shallots, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons peeled, chopped ginger
2 cups water
Zest and juice from 1 1/2 lemons
1 1/2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place bacon on a foil-lined pan and bake for 6 minutes. Cool and cut each slice crosswise in half.

Preparing Devils on Horseback

Stuff each date equally with blue cheese.

Wrap each date with a piece of bacon and thread 3 on each skewer, making sure bacon is secure around the date.

Fry skewered dates in hot oil until bacon crisps and cheese melts. Drain on paper towels.

When cool enough to handle, remove dates from skewers and arrange on a plate. Drizzle with Bleu Wiz and ginger-date purée, and sprinkle with candied almonds and chives.

Preparing Devils on Horseback

Bleu Wiz: Combine all the ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high in 2-minute increments, stirring in between, until all the cheese has melted.

Pour cheeses into a blender jar and blend into a smooth sauce. Pass through a strainer to remove any lumps and cool completely. Refrigerate until needed.

Ginger-date purée: In a medium pot, combine all ingredients except butter and simmer over medium heat until dates are tender.

Preparing Devils on Horseback

Strain, then add the solids to a blender jar and blend with just enough cooking liquid to make a smooth purée, adding butter last to emulsify.

Pass purée through a strainer to remove any lumps.

Cool and refrigerate until needed.