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Appetizers, Vegetarian

Goat cheese- and basil-stuffed filo parcels

Goat cheese- and basil-stuffed filo parcels
Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

Last weekend, we left the city behind and drove about an hour south to my mother-in-law's kibbutz to see the rolling fields of ripening wheat ready to be harvested just before the Shavuot holiday, exactly like it was in ancient ... Read more

Total time: 40 minutes | Makes about 1 1/2 dozen
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, pressed
  • 6 to 8 filo sheets, depending on the size of the sheets
  • 18 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 (8-ounce) log soft goat cheese
  • 1/2 cup toasted pistachios, chopped
  • Plain yogurt, for dipping

Step 1Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Step 2In a small bowl, mix the olive oil and pressed garlic.

Step 3Place 1 filo sheet on a work surface and lightly brush the surface with the garlic oil. Place basil leaves on top of the sheet with the top of each leaf facing downward, leaving enough space between each leaf so a 5-inch square can be cut around it.

Step 4Place about 2 teaspoons of goat cheese on top of each leaf (be sure the goat cheese does not extend over the leaf, or it may moisten and tear the top layer of thin filo dough as it bakes). Place another filo sheet on top of the first (the second layer will become the bottom of the parcel after it is folded and inverted onto a baking sheet). Cut the sheets into 5-inch squares around the basil leaves.

Step 5Fold each square into an envelope, and place the folded parcel onto the baking sheet, folded side down (the basil leaf will be on top).

Step 6Repeat with the rest of the sheets to form 1 1/2 dozen parcels, and brush each very lightly with oil.

Step 7Bake the parcels until crisp and the corners are golden, about 10 minutes. Place the parcels on a serving dish and sprinkle over the chopped pistachios. Serve warm, with a bowl of yogurt on the side for dipping, if desired.


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