Pear and Bleu Cheese Purses

Pear and Bleu cheese purses2

Valentine’s Day is only a little over a week away, so for those of you who would like to spend a romantic evening in, or forgot to make reservations, we will make a nice meal you can make with your significant other. The first course is a little tricky, but it should be fun to make together.  There are a lot of steps that you can do as a team, and forming the little purses are a lot of fun.

When working with filo, it will make your life a lot easier if you make sure it doesn’t dry out. So either work fast or cover the filo with a very slightly damp towel. You should be able to find filo dough in the freezer section of your supermarket, and 1 package is more then you will need.

Just to warn you, these have a tendency to leak when you bake them. Don’t worry too much about it, as nothing is perfect! You can make it a little less likely to leak by cooking down the pears well. If you really want them to be neater you can form them in small triangles instead, like a spanikopita. If you don’t want to make the purses you can often find filo shells at the supermarket and just fill them.

The bleu cheese you use should be to your own tastes, but I recommend a buttermilk or maytag bleu.

This recipe should make about 12-15 purses.

Ingredients:

1 pear

½ tsp sugar

Pinch of salt

9 sheets of filo dough (one package should have about 15-20 sheets)

½ onion

3 oz bleu cheese

½ stick of butter, melted

Kitchen twine

Directions:

1)      Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

2)      Dice the pear and place in a pot with ¼ c water, sugar and salt.

3)      Over medium low heat, cook the pears until the water evaporates and the pear becomes soft and mostly dry.

4)      Slice the onion into thin strips.

5)      Separately cook the onion over medium high heat until it becomes well-caramelized.

6)      Let the pear and onion cool for about 15 minutes, until room temperature.

7)      Crumble the bleu cheese and mix with the onions and pears.

8)      Taste the mixture and add more salt or bleu cheese as necessary.

9)      Place a sheet of filo on a flat surface and brush with melted butter, covering the entire sheet with butter.

10)   Layer with another sheet and butter it, and layer and butter another sheet (3 total).

11)   Cut the filo into 6 squares, about 3” per side.

12)   Spoon 1-2 tsp of filling in each square.

13)   Bunch up the corners of the square, forming a little purse.

14)   Tie off the purse with a bit of twine and cut off any excess filo on top, leaving about ½ inch of filo above the string for decoration.

15)   Brush everything below the string with some melted butter, and brush the baking pan with melted butter.

16)   Place the purses on the baking sheet at least 1 inch apart, and bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.

17)   Before trying to remove them from the baking dish, let them cool 10 minutes.

18)   Carefully remove the string.

19)   Serve and Enjoy!

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