Warm Dates with Parmesan and Walnuts

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Winter is date season, and I look forward to the new crop each year, particularly meaty Medjools. I like to pair the dense, sweet fruit with salty Parmesan and earthy, crunchy walnuts. You can assemble this easy appetizer up to 8 hours in advance and heat just before serving.

Ingredients

  • 24 large dates, preferably Medjool
  • 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil or walnut oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 2-oz (60-g) piece Parmesan cheese, preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 24 walnut halves

Method

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).

Using a paring knife, make a small, lengthwise incision in each date and carefully remove the pit. In a bowl, gently toss the pitted dates with the 2 teaspoons olive oil. Arrange the dates, slit side up, in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet or in a shallow baking dish. Using a vegetable peeler, cut the cheese into bite-sized shavings. Tuck a cheese shaving or two and a walnut half into each date.

Bake until warmed through, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter, drizzle with more olive oil, and serve at once.

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