My P.S. wanted us to try a new cheeseball recipe during the holidays. I was so happy to finally return to my Mom’s Cheeseball Recipe since Kraft now makes Roka Blue in jars again. I didn’t want to change recipes yet! I thought it over and decided I could use the same recipe and add stuff. Maybe some herbs or vegetables? I thought about it for a few days then I struck gold.
I had bought a lot of bags of cranberries this year. They were on sale and I must have been in the mood. So my first choice was to use cranberries in the cheeseball. If nothing else they would add pretty flecks of red. My next idea was to add some green, and jalapeno seemed like a great idea! And one more serving of green- chives! I had some chives leftover from another recipe and that would help me eliminate pricey leftovers.
After I’d mixed the rest of the cheeseball ingredients, I added the shredded cheese, a cup of cranberries, the chopped chives and two chopped jalapenos to the food processor. I pulsed them until I had everything ground and uniformly blended throughout the cheese mixture. It was looking great!
I have a special bowl I use to shape my cheeseball every year. I line it with plastic wrap (it takes two sheets to make it work) and scoop the cheeseball into the plastic lined bowl. I cover and refrigerate the ball for several days to a week before the holiday.
The cheeseball empties out easily onto my cheese board and from there I smooth the sides to make it more pretty. I served the cheeseball with several types of crackers and it was a big hit! A little tang, a little heat and lots of cheesy flavor. It lasted for about 2 weeks in the fridge so we nibbled on cheese and crackers often during that time.
We were very pleased with our combined effort to change our traditional cheeseball. Sometimes it’s just a wild idea that creates a very memorable dish. This one goes on the list to be repeated again. Maybe not every year, but definitely every couple of years!
Cranberry Jalapeno Cheese Ball
1/2 lb butter (2 sticks); room temp
5 oz Kraft Roka Blue Cheese Spread
5 oz Kraft Old English Cheese Spread
8 oz cream cheese; room temp
2 tablespoon Worcestershire
1 tablespoon garlic powder (cut in half if you prefer less garlic)
1 tablespoon onion powder
2 cups shredded cheese (I used Monterey Jack)
1 cup whole fresh cranberries
2 tablespoons jalapeno; chopped, seeds removed
1/4 cup chives; roughly chopped
Chopped walnuts or pecans (optional to coat outside of cheeseball)
Mix all ingredients for cheeseball in blender or food processor.
Measure in additions and pulse until fully integrated.
Refrigerate in plastic wrap-lined round bowl at least 24 hours or up to a week if necessary.
Empty onto a serving platter and smooth sides or roll into finely chopped nuts if desired.