I decided to try hazelnuts instead. They are a little more difficult to stuff but the hazelnuts work well with the sweetness of the dates, so I think it's worth the effort. If necessary, chop the hazelnuts into quarters.
Yield: Makes 12
Time: 25 min
12 roasted hazelnuts, halved
12 dates, pitted
4 preservative-free bacon slices, cut in thirds
Soak toothpicks in water. This will prevent them from burning in the oven. Put oven rack in middle position and preheat to 400°F.
Stuff 2 hazelnut halves into each date and wrap each with a piece of cut bacon. Secure with a toothpick and place on broiler pan or foil a lined baking sheet.
Here's a tip; if you use a foil-lined baking sheet, rather than a broiler pan, check it often. Without the benefit of the slotted broiler pan, the bacon grease will pool and could catch fire in such a hot oven. I recommend cooking only 12 at a time.
Bake 7 minutes, then turn dates over and bake until bacon is crisp, approximately 5 minutes more. Drain and serve.
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