Christmas is over and New Year is on the way. We had a lovely family Christmas with time to sit and play silly games together, relax and enjoy each other’s company. It is nice just to spend time together and of course enjoy a lovely Christmas meal and unwrap presents. Now New Year is approaching I like to get things ready. My Grandmother used to have a saying that if it was like that on New Year’s day it would be like that all year. This always prompts a big tidy up and cleaning session on New Year’s Eve. The idea being that if it is clean and tidy on New Year’s Day it would be clean all year. It never works but I do it every year. My Granny always used to say on New Year’s Eve that if we looked outside the window we would see a man with as many noses on his face as there are days in the year. We spent many hours as children looking for the man with 365 noses. It was a few years until we worked out that on New Year’s Eve there is only one day left in the year. Just before midnight every new year, my Grandad was sent out into the cold in order to be first over the threshold in the New Year, usually with coal in his pocket. This was to bring good luck for the coming year.
As part of the mad cleaning session I use up things from my cupboard to make party nibbles and eats. We do not eat much on New Years Eve, just snacking on treats. New Year’s Day we usually have a roast dinner. Whilst going though my cupboards I found I had some ready made pastry cases from Pidy and decided to use them as a basis for Goats Cheese and Pancetta Bites. I have used Pidy’s edible spoons previously with Vanilla Mousse and this made a delightful dessert. They also worked well in tomato and thyme fish zakouski which would also make a great party nibble. I had some goats cheese and pancetta in the fridge and thought these would work well together.
These were really easy to make. I took the ready made pastry cases and added a little goats cheese into the bottom. I then got a frying pan and gently fried the pancetta until it was nice and crispy. I then added some cherry tomatoes to the pan and heated them for a couple of minutes. I added the pancetta to the pastry case and then a spoonful of Branston caramelised onion chutney.Each of the goats cheese and pancetta bites was topped with a cherry tomato. I then placed them in a pre-heated oven for ten minutes until the cheese had started to melt and the pastry had warmed though.
I have to say they were lovely, the mixture of flavours worked perfectly. The onion in the chutney worked really well with the bacon and goats cheese whilst the warm tomato on top just finished the whole snack off. These would work really well as a New Year nibble alongside other party food. All I need to do now is to finish off cleaning and tidying and I will be ready for the New Year. I hope that the New Year is good to all of you.
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