I am sure most of us remember the famous cheese ball that use to show up at holiday gatherings and I am not talking about the crazy relative that you hid from.  Instead it was the neon orange, processed cheese, with no flavor cheese ball but for some reason you could not stop eating it.  I don’t think I have had a cheese ball in probably 30 years.  A few weeks back, my friend Evelyn, served a delicious cheese ball that she made actually made at home.  It was full of cheese, dates, nuts, and so much flavor.  In fact, I could not stop eating it or thinking about it.  I am positive I consumed about half of it on my own.  I knew I had to replicate the recipe for that Blue Cheese Ball.  

We have had a few people over last week for dinner and I knew it was the perfect time to throw my Blue Cheese Ball out there and see how well it was received.  For the past few weeks I have been making Lenny eat cheese ball after cheese ball while I worked on the recipe.

My recipe is different then my friend’s delicious cheese ball but it is equally as delicious.  This recipe is made with cream cheese which adds structure while the flavors are blue cheese, shallots and lemon zest.  I use a Point Reyes Blue Cheese which is perfect as it is creamy and not crumbly.  

This recipe pairs nicely with a glass of bubbles, a bourbon based cocktail or even a nice glass of red wine.  I like to serve it with Lesley Stowe Raincoast Crisps as their flavors are unique and the cracker is hearty enough to stand up next to a cheese ball. 

Tips:

  • Make this recipe the day before serving so the flavors have time to mingle together.
  • Cream Cheese a full-fat cheese has more structure as well as flavor.  Most likely you are making this cheese ball for a special occasion so why skimp now.
  • Use a blue cheese that has deep blue veins and that is creamy.  Blue cheese crumbles do not work with this recipe as they do not evenly disperse with the other ingredients.
  • Pecans, be sure to toast them slightly as it brings out the nutty flavor.
  • Lemon Zest, this is a good rule of thumb to always use organic when using any citrus zest.  

Tools:

  • Food processor

Recipe:  Blue Cheese Ball

Ingredients:

1 package cream cheese, full fat, at room temperature
4 oz blue cheese, at room temperature
1 small shallot, peeled, minced, I used a micro-plane
1 small Meyer lemon, zested – you will only use the zest, use the juice from lemon in your next salad dressing
1 teaspoon black pepper
pecans, a handful, toasted
italian parsley, a handful

How To:

In a food processor combine all ingredients except pecans and parsley. Mix well.

Using a spatula, spoon the mixture onto a large piece of wax paper and form into a ball.

I bring the corners of the wax paper up to the middle and give a gentle twist to keep the cheese mixture as a ball.

Put in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

Before serving, mince the pecans and parsley in a food processor; scatter on a cutting board and gently roll the cheese ball in the mixture.

Serve.

Eat.

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