Cheddar/Parmesan Cheese Ball with port wine soaked craisins

Spring is officially here. It’s a lovely day, sun shiney, a bit cool, but leaves are starting to come out. I am keeping a close eye on all of the perennials I planted last fall, and almost all have come up. And of course we have been babying our vegetable seedlings in our grow-tent, which will start to go into the ground any minute now. It’s a very hopeful time of year, full of new beginnings and promise.

We have been hosting special receptions each month as a part of the celebration of our choir’s 25th anniversary. Each month I am faced with the challenge of beautiful finger food that fits in a budget, and isn’t the same every time. I often use ingredients I’ve popped into the freezer. Cheese and crackers are always a good staple. We tried out two different recipes of cheese balls, and ended up combining elements of both to make a really classy cheese ball with lots of flavor. It’s a cheddar/Parmesan with port wine-soaked craisins folded into the mixture. Really delicious, and everyone loved it!
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Cheddar/Parmesan Cheese Ball with port wine soaked craisins
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Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Soak craisins in port wine.
  2. In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix cream cheese, sour cream, shredded cheeses, lemon zest, onion, garlic, pepper, cayenne until well combined, adding craisins at the end.
  3. Put chopped pecans on a piece of waxed paper.
  4. Remove cheese mixture from bowl, form into a ball, and roll in the chopped pecans.
  5. Can be refrigerated, but fine to serve right away.

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