Everyone remembers the classic-style cheese ball with a creamy cheese center and crunchy almond or pecan crust. This retro cocktail party food has made a delectable comeback with a few updated twists. Here are some simple cooking tips and recipes for making easy and elegant cheese balls for your next cocktail party or winter night in when you want a creamy cheesy appetizer.
Parsley Crusted Cheese Ball
Makes 8 to 10 servings Ingredients: 1/3 stick unsalted butter, softened 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice 1/8 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce 2 dashes hot sauce 1/8 teaspoon coarse salt 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper 2-1/2 ounces goat cheese 3 teaspoons finely chopped scallions 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh curly-leaf parsley Directions: 1. Combine butter, cream cheese, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, salt and pepper in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. 2. Spoon mixture into a bowl and mix in goat cheese and scallions until fully combined. Shape mixture into one large ball or three smaller balls. 3. Roll ball in parsley and either wrap in plastic wrap and chill until ready to use or serve immediately.
Blue Cheese Brandy Ball
Makes 8 to 10 servings Ingredients: 4 ounces blue cheese, crumbled, softened 8 ounces cream cheese, softened 1 clove garlic, finely chopped 2 tablespoons snipped fresh parsley 2 tablespoons brandy 1/3 cup sesame seeds, toasted Directions: 1. Combine blue cheese, cream cheese, garlic, parsley and brandy in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.2. Shape mixture into a large ball and roll in sesame seeds. Serve immediately or chill until ready to use.
Mini Bacon Cheese Balls
Makes 54 mini balls Ingredients: 1 (8-ounce) container chive and onion cream cheese 1 (8-ounce) package grated mozzarella cheese 4 slices bacon, cooked, finely chopped 1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 3/4 cup toasted walnuts, finely chopped Directions: 1. Combine cream cheese and mozzarella cheese in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. 2. Stir in bacon, Italian seasoning, and garlic powder until fully combined. 3. Form mixture into 54 (1-inch) balls and roll each in walnuts. Chill until ready to serve.