Wine Pairing: Chenin Blanc, Champagne
12 Medjool dates, whole and pitted
1 cup dry Sherry
6 slices bacon, cut in half
2 oz Manchego cheese
Cracked black pepper, to taste
Toothpicks (soaked in water to prevent burning)
In a small bowl, combine dates and sherry. Cover and place in refrigerator. Soak six hours to overnight.
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Stuff each date with a 1” slice of cheese. Wrap with one half bacon strip and secure with toothpick. Sprinkle with cracked black pepper.
Coat baking sheet with cooking spray and place assembled dates on pan.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until bacon has reached desired crispness. Remove dates from baking sheet and let rest for one to two minutes.
Transfer dates to a platter and serve.