Blue Cheese and Pecan Stuffed Dates
4 slices 365 Everyday Value Bacon
½ small red onion, chopped
3 tablespoons orange juice
½ cup blue cheese crumbles
2½ ounces 365 Everyday Value Neufchâtel Cheese
½ cup chopped pecans, divided
24 pitted dates
To ease the party rush, make the filling for these dates a few days in advance, keeping in mind that the flavor will get stronger over time. For a vegetarian version omit the bacon and sauté the onions in olive oil instead.
Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to drain on paper towels, reserving ½ teaspoon bacon grease in skillet. Add onion and cook over medium heat until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add orange juice and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until liquid is evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer onion to a medium bowl and let cool. Crumble bacon into the onions. Add cheeses and half of the pecans. Stir well to combine. Stuff each date with a heaping teaspoon of the mixture and top with remaining pecans.
Makes 2 dozen.
Nutrition per serving: (1 each/23g-wt.): 80 calories (45 from fat), 5g total fat, 1.5g saturated fat, 5mg cholesterol, 80mg sodium, 7g total carbohydrate (1g dietary fiber, 6g sugar), 2g protein.