Summer is back for what is likely a final blast. And as a summer-lover, I am honestly happy about it. But I have to admit, I’m starting to feel like I’ve had my fill. I’m tired of feeling vaguely overheated all the time and I cannot wait to welcome blankets, sweaters, and piping hot tea back into my life. I don’t want to sound ungrateful. But there is a part of me that needs the excuse to curl up on the couch with a pot of piping hot cheese and only a cold, blustery day can give me that. I sweated my way through shooting today’s Baked Goat Cheese Dip and it didn’t feel right. I’m looking forward to making it when it’s not 30°C outside. But I know those days are coming, so I was happy to put this together for you. Let’s get into it.
As I mentioned, I shot this when it was crushingly hot out. And for some reason, I’ve decided that it’s unreasonable to pay for air conditioning this far into September. Why yes, I do appear to have masochistic tendencies. But having said that, this Baked Goat Cheese Dip only asks for 20 minutes of your oven’s time provided you have everything ready to go. So even if you’re in the midst of a heatwave yourself, your sweatiness will be relatively short-lived. Pinky promise.
So let’s break this dip down. This is a blissfully simple recipe. And no, this isn’t my version of “simple”. This is truly simple and requires no working ahead of even extensive chopping. There is one thing you have to do in advance and that is to take your goat cheese and cream cheese out of the fridge. They need to be good and soft before you start mixing. Trust me, your forearms will thank you. In terms of chopping, your mincing a clove of garlic, chopping a little sage, and slicing some bread. All very pedestrian, all very basic.
Now, if you’ve read this blog for any extended period of time, you know my recipes, are not exactly easy. I know that, but I also think people are more capable of doing medium-hard things than they give themselves credit for. And yes, sometimes doing the hard thing feels a lot better than doing the easy thing. I firmly believe that. But I also know that sometimes the best thing you can do for yourself is the lazy thing. This Baked Goat Cheese Dip is the lazy thing. And the best part about this dip is it doesn’t look like the lazy thing.
Okay, so what am I asking you to do. Well, first I want you to make your own crostini. They are better than the ones that come in a box and they don’t require brainpower or even a good-quality loaf of bread. When you’re buying bread for toasting purposes, don’t be a hero. Buy the cheapest french stick you can find and spend the rest of the money on wine. You won’t be able to tell the difference, trust me, I know. If bread sommeliers were a thing, I’d probably be one.
Next, I’m going to get you to blister some grapes. This is also not a big deal. Concord grapes start out delicious, the farmer and nature already saw to that. All you have to do is enhance that and you do that by dousing the grapes in olive oil and salt and popping them in the oven. Then drizzle the blistered beauties with a little honey and you’ve got deliciousness.
And finally, we have the Baked Goat Cheese Dip herself and you best believe she won’t give you grief. All you have to do is cream the goat cheese, cream cheese, garlic, and sage together in a bowl. Pop the mixture into a baking dish and add it to the collection of items already blistering and toasting away in the oven. Once the goat cheese mixture is brown and bubbly, you’ve got a dip.
Now, you can get as fussy as you want when it comes to styling this sucker, or you could just pop a few grapes in your mouth and plunge a crostini directly into the center of the dip and scoop. You do you. But if you are serving this to more than just yourself – and no judgment if you are not – it’s pretty easy to make this dip look good. Just place a nice bundle of blistered grapes on top, garnish with some sage and you’re off to the races.
So that’s everything you need to know about this Baked Goat Cheese Dip with Blistered Grapes. A simple yet stylish pot of cheese that everyone will love. But that’s a fairly obvious statement, when was the last time a pot of cheese was unloved? How about “loved more than usual”? I don’t know, just make it. It’s very good.
Baked Goat Cheese Dip with Blistered Concord Grapes
- Small baking dish
- Small Baking Sheet
- Large baking sheet
- 1 loaf french bread cut into thin slices
- 6 tbsp olive oil divided
- 1 tsp kosher salt divide
- 2 bundles concord grapes
- 300g (10oz) goat cheese softened
- 115g (4oz) cream cheese softened
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 2 tbsp fresh sage finely chopped
- 1 tbsp honey
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Arrange the bread slices on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and sprinkle with half of the salt. Transfer to the oven and bake for 10 minutes or until golden. Set them aside to cool.1 loaf french bread, 1 tsp kosher salt, 6 tbsp olive oil
- Place the grape bundles on a small baking sheet and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil. Sprinkle with the remaining salt and place in the oven. Roast for 15 minutes or until the skin on the grapes split. Keep warm until ready to serve.6 tbsp olive oil, 2 bundles concord grapes, 1 tsp kosher salt
- In a large bowl, cream together the goat cheese, cream cheese, garlic, sage, and the remaining olive oil. Transfer the mixture to a small baking dish greased with olive oil. Smooth the top with the back of a spoon and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until browned with bubbling.300g (10oz) goat cheese, 115g (4oz) cream cheese, 1 clove garlic, 2 tbsp fresh sage, 6 tbsp olive oil
- Transfer the baking dish to a platter and arrange the crostini around it. Place a bundle of the blistered grapes on top and garnish with additional fresh sage leaves. Drizzle the dip with the honey and serve immediately.1 tbsp honey