kelly said

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23 July 2006

Holiday Cheese Ball (Cooks Illustrated)

Holiday Cheese Ball


We prefer the flavor of extra-sharp cheddar here; however, any good-quality sharp cheddar will work. Lowfat or whipped cream cheese should not be substituted. To make a Holiday Cheese Ball with nuts, follow the recipe and roll the cheese ball in 1/3 cup finely chopped nuts of your choice instead of the herbs.

Serves 15 to 20

8 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese , shredded (2 cups)

1 package cream cheese (8-ounce), softened

4 ounces blue cheese , crumbled (1 cup)

4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick), softened

2 tablespoons minced onion , rinsed and patted dry

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 1/2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce

1 clove garlic , minced

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves

2 tablespoons minced fresh chives

1. Process all of the ingredients, except the parsley and chives, in a food processor until smooth, about 1 minute. Line a medium bowl with plastic wrap so that it overhangs the rim by at least 4 inches (use two pieces if the wrap is not wide enough). Transfer the cheese mixture to the bowl, press the overhanging plastic flush to the cheese, and refrigerate until firm, about 3 hours.

2. Remove the cheese from the bowl, gripping the edges of the plastic wrap. Gather the edges of the plastic wrap together and twist, shaping the cheese into a ball. Remove the plastic wrap. Roll the cheese in the parsley and chives. Transfer to a serving plate and serve with crackers.

To Make Ahead

The cheese ball can be made through step 1 up to 2 days in advance. Continue with step 2 just before serving.