Updated from the archive
Food blogging has introduced me to some wonderful people. And one of those wonderful people just happen to be getting married soon! Kelsey, of Apple a Day, will be walking down the aisle in just a few weeks. To celebrate, Amy of Sing for Your Supper, is hosting a virtual bridal shower with a handful of Kelsey’s blogging buddies.
The menu is outstanding. I chose to make Phyllo Purses, or you might know them as Beggar’s Purses: an oozy goat cheese filling wrapped up with a few layers of delicate, crispy phyllo dough. And butter. Where there is phyllo, there is butter!
Phyllo purses are in my Top 5 favorite appetizers. They look nice, they taste great, and you can fill them with lots of things (spinach-artichoke is one of my faves). They’re not really that much work but I have learned a few tweaks to the technique over the years:
- Lay everything out – utensils, filling, melted butter, etc – before even opening your package of thawed phyllo.
- Keep the unused pile of phyllo covered with a barely-damp paper towel (too wet and the top layer will stick to the paper towel)
- If you put a large hole/tear in one of the three sheets of dough, just add a fourth sheet so you don’t lose any of the filling while baking.
- Don’t underfill the purses. Underfilling will create too much of a “poof” on top of the purse – one that will get droopy in the oven and fall over sideways before it has time to crisp. It happens. Same great taste, but less impressive presentation.
- Don’t pull too hard when tying the green onion strips/chives around the purse, they’ll snap. While mostly for appearance, it does aid a bit in keeping the purse closed in the oven.
Goat Cheese Phyllo Purses
Elegant phyllo purses filled with tangy goat cheese and bacon.
- 5 oz goat cheese, softened
- 2 Tbsp chives, chopped
- 4 slices of pancetta or bacon, cooked to a crisp (prosciutto is good, it's just not crispy)
- black pepper
- 6 sheets of phyllo dough
- 6-8 Tbsp of melted butter
- Chives or strips of the tops of green onions for tying
- Preheat the oven to 400.
- Stir together goat cheese, chives, crumbled bacon, and a few grinds of black pepper in a small bowl. If the goat cheese is too hard, put it in the microwave for 10 seconds.
- Unroll the phyllo dough onto a dry surface. Remove 1 sheet of phyllo dough and place it on a dry surface (I put a sheet of wax paper between the dough and countertop).
- Brush the entire top of the sheet with melted butter.
- Top with another sheet of phyllo and brush the top of it with melted butter.
- Repeat with one more sheet of phyllo. Cut the stack into 4 equal rectangles.
- Place a golf ball-sized filling onto the center of each piece of dough. Gather the sides into a pouch and form a purse, pinching the gathered dough.
- Tie a chive or a strip of green onion around the gathered dough.
- Place the purse onto a lined baking sheet and lightly brush with melted butter.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes until the phyllo purse tops are golden brown and crispy.
- Remove from oven and let cool. Serve warm or room temperature
Yields: 8 purses
Estimated time: 30 minutes