No self-respecting foodie would plop a round orange mound of cheese on a holiday party tray and call it good. Christmas cheese balls should be artful and special and show you care. Here, I’ve rounded up some of the ones we have featured over the years in the hope they will spark some ideas for you.
In the picture above, I’ve used my friend Carolyn’s recipe for a seasoned pepper cheeseball and I’ve made small balls instead of a large one. The red tinge to one of the brands of seasoned pepper really works well with a Christmas theme and placing the balls on a holiday tray seals the deal.
I have to make a confession on this one. This way day two of using this cheese ball. With parties stacked back to back, I didn’t take the time to make a new one. I just unwound the citrus peel garnishes, grabbed new cherub tomatoes, and squished the cheese ball back into the shape of a tree. Alas, I have no day one pictures of it, but I can assure you the proportion of cheese tree to garnishes was much better the first time around. I offer this up anyway because I know you get the idea and can take it and run with it.
Isn’t this beautiful? My friend Suzi is responsible for arranging these so beautifully, as I recall. If we were doing it again (and, trust me, we will), I would do a couple of things differently. First, I would chop the fresh parsley much more finely and I would roll the balls much more sparingly in it. The green was beautiful, but they almost looked like spinach balls insteaad of the lovely cheddar cheese balls that they are. The second thing I would do is put a small set of silicone tongs on the side of the platter, signalling to guests that they should plop a whole one onto their plate. Crackers were arranged neatly next to this platter, although if a person wanted to imbibe a cheeseball with nothing but fork, that is their right.
These cheese balls are sweet, rather than savory. Served with slices of apple or peach, it’s a divine combination. Just mix cream cheese with a little Splenda/sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg. Roll them in gingersnap cookies that you have pulverized into crumbs. Wait until just before serving to roll for best results. That way the crumbled gingersnaps on the outside of the cheeseballs will still be crunchy.
We hope that in your own personal repertoire you have cheeseball recipes others beg for. Our Christmas wish is that you take the few extra moments necessary to serve that special recipe in proper holiday fashion.