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Grilled Cheese in Grape Leaves

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Grilled Goat Cheese Wrapped in Grape Leaves

I am especially fond of several varieties of good goat cheese, and a few days ago I was playing around with a Trader Joe's brand made by Laura Chenel. Not at all bad, and priced very nicely, although I like some of the Cypress Grove cheeses even more - but the world is filled with great goat cheeses, and I'm sure you have your favorites. The last time I looked, the Cheeseboard in Berkeley had more than eighty goat cheeses in stock. That's just a small sample of the wonderful goat cheeses available world-wide.

Here's a nice way to serve your favorite goat cheese, but don't feel limited to just that type of cheese. I tried this with a Lagrein and found it to be delightful.

Choose your cheese and cut it into slices about 3/4-inch thick or so. Cut a few slices to make a few servings. Put your favorite extra virgin olive oil on a shallow plate and add a few sprigs of a good, fresh herb, such as thyme, to the oil. Then roll the cheese in the herb-infused oil, and put each round of cheese on an appropriately-sized grape leaf. Wipe each leaf, whether fresh or brined, with a clean paper towel or lint-free cloth towel. I like fresh leaves better than the brined leaves, but both will work. Place a sprig or two of the herb on the cheese and wrap the cheese securely in the grape leaf. If you're using fresh leaves, the small, attached stem can be used to secure the leaf around the cheese, or you can secure the leaf with a tooth pick.

Place the wrapped cheese on an oiled rack set about four to six inches above medium hot coals of fruit wood (grape vine trimmings are great, but apple, peach, pear are also excellent) or good quality "lump" charcoal The Lump Charcoal Database . Charcoal briquettes, like Kingsford, would be a choice of last resort. Grill the wrapped cheese for about three to four minutes on each side, place the packages on a warm plate, unwrap, and serve - enjoy the cheese and the aroma of the leaves and herbs cooked over wood.
post #2 of 7
I've got a slew of chevre, most fresh smooth creamy.....Do you think possibly freezing a small (dolmas size) log that will keep oozing contained?
cooking with all your senses.....
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cooking with all your senses.....
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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi,

Over the years I've made a number of variations on the technique, using softer and firmer cheeses. Depending on how soft your cheese is, and how tightly and securely you wrap it, it should be OK. This is based on the experience I've had, which does not include any freezing but does include soft chevre.

Before firing up the grill, you could try wrapping a few, put them in a baking dish, and cooking them in the oven for a while (about 400-degrees for fifteen minutes if I remember correctly). Brush a little oil on the leaves to prevent scorching. If the cheese oozes, you've caught it in the dish and you can still eat and enjoy it.
post #4 of 7
20 years ago Kingsford was a good charcoal. Then the corporate bean counters got them to change the formulation. It is loaded with all kinds of nasty stuff now including coal(as in anthracite).
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Never cared much for the stuff, although, admitedly, it was better than the other brands I tried. However, my preference was lump charcoal (mesquite) and fruit woods like peach, apricot, apple, and the ubiquitous oak. Actually, I wasn't too crazy about oak, but it's the local wood. Someone once said that cooking with oak made the food taste like furniture <LOL>
post #6 of 7
alittle lemon to help polish off that oaky cheese roll?
cooking with all your senses.....
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cooking with all your senses.....
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post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
That's very funny! :lol:
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