Cooking with Kyle: Holiday classic cheese ball recipe

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – This is a classic, southern staple, the classic holiday cheese ball.

People love it, whether placed next to Beluga caviar or cocktail franks in barbecue sauce.

Enjoy the recipe as is, use some of the substitutions I have provided, or just get creative! The key is the proportions of cream cheese versus other cheese. Keep those intact and the additions can be unlimited. It’s easy, quick and a definite winner.

It may be made in advance, keeps easily for two weeks, easy to transport. Enjoy!

24 oz cream cheese, room temperature
3 cups freshly grated sharp cheddar
3 green onions, chopped
1.5 t Worcestershire
1.5 t Louisiana or Tabasco hot sauce
2 t dried parsley
1 t garlic powder
1 t dried oregano
1 t dried dill weed
1/2 t smoked paprika
1/2 t black pepper

For coating:
1 – 1.5 C chopped pecans or walnuts
or
1 – 1.5 C chopped, fresh Italian parsley

In a mixing bowl, place cream cheese and whip until smooth.

If necessary, may be softened further in the microwave on low power. Be careful not to oversoften.

Add remaining ingredients and fold in until thoroughly and evenly combined. Use a rubber spatula.
Form the mixture into the desired shape – ball, rectangle, square, Christmas tree, you can get creative.
Coat with chopped nuts or fresh parsley. If making in advance, wait until the day of serving to coat.
Refrigerate at least a hour to allow to firm. Remove from refrigerator and allow to stand at room temperature 30 minutes before serving.

Possible variations/substitutions:

Substitute crumbled goat cheese for cheddar and 2-3 T pesto for spices/herbs

Substitute crumbled bleu or Roquefort for cheddar and add 1/4 C dried cranberries. Add salt and pepper to taste, delete other spices.

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