Fried Goat Cheese with Pear, Crispy Prosciutto, and Balsamic Reduction
Yield:Approximately 20 Goat Cheese Bites 1x
1 10.5 ounce log of goat cheese
4–5 very thin slices of prosciutto
2 ripe Bosc Pears, cut into approximately 1/4” or slightly larger slices
Chives, finely sliced
All Purpose Flour
Freshly ground black pepper
Panko bread crumbs
Canola Oil (or another good neutral frying oil)
For the Balsamic Reduction
1 1/2 cups balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
To Make The Balsamic Reduction: Heat the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan over medium heat until just boiling, then reduce heat to low (a slow simmer is what you’re after) and add in brown sugar. Stir occasionally and let simmer until reduced by at least half. The balsamic will continue to thicken as it cools. Stored in the refrigerator, it will last for quite a while. I like to keep mine in little squeeze bottle.
Freeze the goat cheese for about 10 minutes before slicing. This will help give you nice, clean slices. Using dental floss, cut through the goat cheese, creating approximately 1/2” medallions.
Create a standard breading station: one bowl with all-purpose flour seasoned with Kosher salt and black pepper, another with 2 eggs and 1 tablespoon of water beaten together, and the last with Panko breadcrumbs.
Coat the goat cheese in the flour, shaking off excess. Then, completely coat the goat cheese in the egg wash followed by the Panko breadcrumbs. Move to a foil-lined baking sheet.
Once all the slices of goat cheese are breaded, freeze for about 5-10 minutes before frying to firm them up a bit.
Heat a small frying pan with 1/4″ to 1/2″ of canola oil over medium heat. You want the oil to reach half way up the goat cheese. While the goat cheese is firming up in the freezer, fry your prosciutto slices once the oil is hot. When you add them to the pan, it should sizzle and crackle quite a bit, and the prosciutto will start to shrivel up. Let fry for several minutes, turning over with tongs, until nice and crispy (it will resemble the color of cooked bacon, and will continue to crisp up as it cools). Remove prosciutto to paper towels to drain excess oil, then crumble into bite-size pieces.
Fry goat cheese slices, 3-4 at a time, until golden brown on both sides. I find it easiest to flip with a fork. Remove fried goat cheese slices to paper towels to drain excess oil.
You can fry the prosciutto and goat cheese ahead of time, let cool and store in fridge, and reheat in 350°F oven until warmed through when ready to serve.
When ready to plate, top each goat cheese with a slice of bosc pear, some bits of prosciutto, a sprinkle of chives, and drizzle generously with balsamic reduction. Serve immediately.