Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Herbed Goat Cheese Spread with Marinara

This herbed goat cheese spread with marinara sauce is a simple little snack or side dish that is quick and impressive at the same time.  In this picture, I used a homemade marinara sauce but you could use store-bought or your favorite basic spaghetti sauce.  I first had this in a restaurant and it was served with little toasted bread crisps.  I have served it with homemade bread, french bread, the mini rye/pumpernickel slices you can find near the deli, bagel crisps, and about any kind of cracker.  
Take a small 6" cast iron skillet and put a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the pan to keep the cheese from sticking.  Put your small log of herbed goat cheese (find this near the Brie and other specialty cheeses near the deli) in the center of the skillet.  You can use any kind of the soft goat cheese but I prefer the herbed.  Top with another layer of sauce.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 10-15 minutes until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is heated through but not totally melted apart.  Serve this right in the skillet (but be sure to warn your guests!).  

I had never tried goat cheese before having this and will admit I was a little scared that it would be too strong or "goaty".  Trust me, if you like Feta or blue cheese, you will like this.  It is milder than those tastes and even kids seem to love it.  Great warm snack for those Sunday afternoon football games that takes pretty much no work!

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