A favorite appetizer that is too rich to have very often – a party setting is perfect though.  Adapted from Dinner with Julie, here is exactly how I make it, though it’s also very tasty with more chilies.

Goat Cheese Gratin

1 red pepper

1 yellow or 1 orange pepper

1 pint of cherry or grape tomatoes

2 Jalapeno or Serrano chili peppers, seeded

6 cloves of garlic peeled

Preheat oven to 450, clean and seed the peppers, cut in half and set them cut side down on an olive oil sprayed cookie sheet (covered in parchment).  Fill the rest of the sheet with the tomatoes, seeded chilies and peeled garlic and spray with more olive oil, making sure that all are coated.  Roast for about 30 minutes, until the skin on the peppers blackens and blisters a bit.  Remove from the oven.

When the peppers are cool enough to handle, peel them – it’s easiest just to use your fingers and pull off as much skin as you can, discard the peels, and then scrape everything off of the cookie sheet/parchment paper into a food processor.  Then add to the food processor;

1 can (200 mL) sliced, black olives, drained

2 T. red wine vinegar

Pulse until the mixture is well blended, but not pureed.  Then, in a lightly sprayed baking dish (I usually use a 1 1/2 qt./1.4 L Corning Ware casserole), crumble in a;

16 oz. (454 g) log of soft, unripened goat cheese

Spread the vegetable mixture over top and bake for 10-15  minutes at whatever temperature the oven is at – yesterday I baked it for 10 minutes at 400, you just want it warm and slightly bubbly.  Serve with something to spread it on, our favorite is pieces of multigrain baguette.

If by chance there is any left over, you have to make hamburgers and try this as a topping on them.  Such a great discovery!

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