Strawberry Goat Cheese & Basil Cigars

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Strawberries are hitting their peak all over the southern United States. While the north still has berry goodness to come, I took the opportunity to head to a local berry farm to pick berries, and then create a four-course dinner featuring one of the nation’s most celebrated fruits. From jam to cake, risotto to steak, this is a menu to keep on hand for any future strawberry seasons.

Sweet Berry Farm

Since moving to Texas, one of my most favorite places to visit is Sweet Berry Farm in Marble Falls. Each spring we make the drive to pick their luscious strawberries. For a small amount of bending and stooping we’re rewarded with plenty of sun-warmed berries and pink-stained fingers.

A few of my foodie friends and I had already been discussing a trip out to the farm and a Tasty Tour was set up for what turned out to be the same Saturday as the Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24 for April. Considering I had just done the event in March, imagine my surprise when my proposal was selected! I set to work finalizing my menu and obsessively checking the strawberry report for berry conditions.

Friday night we were hit with a strong storm (with the power going out!) and I started to worry it would be raining all of Saturday. However, when I awoke the sun was shining with not a cloud in the sky. It was going to be a great day for picking berries! In our four years of picking berries, I think this year was the best. The season started a bit later, resulting in a TON of berries that were ready to be picked. It was muddy and puddle-y from the night before, and lots of ripe berries were to be had next to the waters, but there really were berries everywhere. We filled our two boxes, about 11 pounds worth of berries, at a record pace.

Sweet Berry Farm

The mud didn’t bother people, as many just took off their shoes and socks and picked berries barefooted! I can understand why – picking berries gets a little addictive. Even when your box is full and you decide to leave, you see just one more red jewel in among the leaves… I was trying to convince my husband we should pick another boxful just because there were so. many. berries. in the fields but he (probably wisely) resisted my prodding.

Once we were back at the house I set to work creating the ultimate strawberry dinner.

The Menu

Strawberry Mint Sparkles
Strawberry Mint Sparkles

Strawberry Goat Cheese - Strawberry Goat Cheese & Basil Cigars lead off a meal full of strawberry-infused dishes.
Strawberry Goat Cheese & Basil Cigars

Strawberry Risotto
Strawberry Risotto with Grilled Asparagus

Steak with Strawberry Pepper Sauce
Grass-fed Sirloin Steak with Strawberry Pepper Sauce

Strawberry Upside Down Cake
Strawberry Upside Down Cakes

Strawberry Vanilla Jam
Strawberry Vanilla Jam

The dinner was a success! Even my pastry chef friends graciously declared the dessert to be yummy – but of course, you can’t really go wrong with strawberries and cake!

 

Strawberry Goat Cheese & Basil Cigars

Phyllo dough makes these appetizers feel fancy, but they're so easy
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Appetizers
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 180 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 4 sheets phyllo dough, thawed and cut into 8 rectangles
  • 16 oz chèvre
  • 4 strawberries, diced
  • 3 basil leaves, sliced thinly
  • Salt, pepper
  • Olive oil, butter, or spray for dough

Instructions

  • Heat oven to 350°F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Mix together chèvre, berries, and basil until thoroughly combined. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Separate sheets of dough and lightly brush each with olive oil and reassemble. Arrange 1 tablespoon of filling at the edge of each rectangle, then roll up tightly. Pinch the ends together slightly to avoid leakage (although if it does, you can just sneakily shove the chèvre back into the dough with a spoon).
  • Bake for 10-15 minutes, until crispy.

Nutrition

Calories: 180 kcalCarbohydrates: 5 gProtein: 11 gFat: 13 gSaturated Fat: 8 gCholesterol: 26 mgSodium: 255 mgPotassium: 31 mgFiber: 0.3 gSugar: 1 gIron: 1 mg
Tried this recipe?Share on Instagram and mention @stetted or tag #stetted!

Thanks to Foodbuzz for letting my share my strawberries with you!

20 Comments

  1. Megan – what a sumptuous strawberry feast! Fabulous idea for a 24,24,24 and some lovely recipes there which I will be pleased to use when it is finally strawberry season in Toronto!

  2. I’m jealous. I recall when I lived in NC going to farms to pick strawberries and blueberries but have not done it for years. There is nothing quite like a fresh picked berry and you’ve made such a tempting array of foods. Thanks for the cigar recipe; sounds simple and delicious!

  3. I love the idea of this strawberry feast. I live in north Florida, fairly close to Plant City – a real strawberry mecca. We have fresh strawberries mostly year round, but I rarely branch out of my comfort zone with them. The strawberry, goat cheese, and basil cigars caught my eye and I may have to borrow your recipe for an upcoming party we’re having. Strawberry and goat cheese sounds amazing together.

  4. Great post! I won’t see strawberries for a little while yet here in my garden but you have me more excited than ever right now! The strawberry risotto is brilliant, by the way! Very cool that you got to do 24, 24, 24 two months in a row, too.

  5. stetted, you are my newest most favoritest blog and i follow you on twitter now too! you have inspired me to go berry picking, and i hope to go next weekend! I would love to try your jam – hint hint 😉

  6. What a neat idea to pick an ingredient to make an entire meal based around, especially a strawberry! Are you going to be posting recipes of all of these dishes? Because they all look absolutely mouth watering.

    And I LOVE homemade jam!! How awesome of you to be giving some away!

  7. Congratulations for being one of the other 23. Love all your creations. If you have leftover strawberries check out my strawberry millefeuilles!!

  8. It’s so cute how you went to the actual farm and picked all the strawberries yourself. The experience is well worth it I’m sure. I love the strawberry farms here in CA, but sadly, many were forced to close down due to the economy. I’m inspired to scour the roadside for a strawberry-picking experience. Glad you had a blast doing the 24/24/24 bit. And the jam looks delish!

  9. What an amazing menu! I’m actually doing five days of strawberries on my blog right now. I thought I had today’s post figured out, but I’m seriously lusting after those strawberry cigars and might have to make those instead! Thanks for the great inspiration! 🙂

  10. This sounds amazing! I’ve been looking for more things to do with the abundance of strawberries available this time of year. I can’t wait to try some of your recipes!

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