Goat cheese, fig, and hazelnut terrine

Posted by on Dec 30, 2011 | 0 comments

Grape-leaf wrapped terrine; slice and serve on breadThis sweet and savory dish will wow guests at your next cocktail party or wine tasting and can also be served as an appetizer or cheese course. This recipe makes either one large terrine (in a 6″ x 3″ loaf pan) or two smaller terrines. The mold can be any dish that’s longer than it is wide, though even a simple loaf pan turns out a beautiful result. It must be made at least a half day in advance, though it is even better if it can rest for two days before serving.

Adapted from Jody Adams, In the Hands of a Chef


¼ lb high-quality dried figs
½ cup sweet sherry or Marsala wine
4-5 grape leaves preserved in brine
1 lb fresh goat cheese, divided into 5 equal portions
¼ lb aged goat cheese (like Bûcheron)
½ cup hazelnuts

  1. Remove the stems from the figs and slice them crosswise into quarter-inch slices. Steep them in half of the sherry or Marsala for an hour, then drain if they haven’t soaked up all the liquid.
  2. If the hazelnuts are not peeled or toasted, remove their skins and toast them. Bring a pint of water to a boil in a medium or large saucepan, then stir in a teaspoon of baking soda and add the hazelnuts. Stir carefully, as the water will foam up heavily. After five minutes, drain the hazelnuts in a colander or sieve and rinse them very carefully under cold water. The skins should slip right off. Toast the nuts on a sheet pan in a 350-degree oven for 20 minutes, until golden brown.
  3. Line the pan(s) with plastic wrap, leaving several inches to drape over the sides. You will wrap this over the top to cover the terrine. Line the sides and bottom of the plastic-lined pan with grape leaves, leaving part of the leaves to overhang a little, to be folded over the terrine. This will keep it neat when you flip it out of the pan to unmold it.
  4. Spread 1 portion of goat cheese over the bottom of the pan and top with half of the aged goat cheese. Lay half of the figs over the cheese. Top with another portion of fresh goat cheese, and top this with half the hazelnuts. Top with more fresh goat cheese and the rest of the aged cheese. Lay the remaining figs over the cheese and cover with the remaining hazelnuts. Finish with the rest of the goat cheese. The layers should look like this (from the bottom up):
  • Fresh goat
  • Hazelnuts
  • Figs
  • Aged goat
  • Fresh goat
  • Hazelnuts
  • Fresh goat
  • Figs
  • Aged goat
  • Fresh goat
  1. Carefully pour the second half of the sherry or Marsala over the top of the final layer of goat cheese.
  2. Fold the grape laves over the terrine, followed by the plastic wrap. Bang the pan on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles, and press down gently on the top. Refrigerate at least four hours to set.
  3. One to two hours before serving, remove it from the refrigerator, unfold the bottom plastic wrap to expose the grape leaves, then put a platter on top of the terrine and flip it upside down. It should unmold easily and keep its shape after you flip it right side up again and pull away the pan. When it’s time to serve it, slice an end off it to show off the beautiful layering inside, and keep a basket of sliced baguettes nearby.

Some people don’t care to eat the grape leaves and will peel them back, so during your party, you might check occasionally to trim any unsightly leaf hanging over the edge.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *