This post is sponsored by Castello cheese – making everyday occasions delicious, indulgent and special.
Tis’ the season of entertaining! I know you’re probably still enjoying the candy riches of Halloween but cocktail parties, family dinners and festive get-togethers are just around the corner.
I love to entertain, but it can become a little crazy if you let it. My secret – easy-to-make, delicious appetizers that can also be prepared ahead of time so you’re not spending the whole night in the kitchen.
And these blue cheese, cranberry and walnut puff pastry bites fit the bill. These are made with a store-bought puff pastry, Castello Danish Blue Cheese, dried cranberries and walnut. They are so easy to throw together and they can be made hours (yes, hours!) before people start arriving.
And not only are these bites easy to make, they are absolutely delicious. The cranberries are reconstituted in a apricot and balsamic mixture and the Castello Blue Cheese is mixed with cream cheese to provide a fragrant, creamy bite. Add in the crunch of walnuts and you have a perfect little passed appetizer or just a delicious snack for a movie night in.
The perfect way to get your hands on all this cheese is to enter Castello’s #UnlockYourChef by holding a sweepstakes for delicious prizes, including private cooking classes for two and cheese for a year. To enter, click here! Seriously, who doesn’t want cheese for a year?!
Now let’s get our party on!
- 1 package puff pastry, thawed
- 1 egg
- 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
- ⅔ cup Castello Blue Cheese
- ¼ cup apricot preserves
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 cup roughly chopped dried cranberries
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Unfold puff pastry dough on a lightly floured surface and roll with a rolling pin if surface is uneven.
- Cut out 4-inch circles and set on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Repeat with second sheet of puff pastry. After cutting out the 4-inch circles, cut out smaller circles out of the second half of circles.
- Prick the large 4-inch circles with a fork.
- Combine the egg and 1 tablespoon water and whisk together.
- Brush the egg wash on the 4-inch circles and then top with the cut circles. Brush the tops of those with egg wash as well.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
- White the puff pastry is baking, combine the cream cheese and blue cheese and blend together until combined.
- In a saucepan combine apricot preserves, balsamic vinegar and dried cranberries. Simmer for about 4-6 minutes.
- After the puff pastry shells have bakes for 15 minutes, remove from oven.
- Fill each pastry first with the blue cheese mixture, top with the cranberries, and sprinkle a few walnuts on top.
- Return to the oven and bake another 15-20 minutes or until crust is golden brown and the cheese mixture has warmed.
- Remove from oven. These can be served immediately or kept at room temperature until ready to serve.