Spiced Apple Cheese Ball for New Year’s Eve

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Apple-cheese-ballEvery year we host a Christmas party with a cheese theme – guests bring a chunk of cheese or a cheese recipe, and we always see a cheese ball or two. This year, a friend brought a vintage apple-shaped cheese ball, which was brilliant, and something that could be called into service for any number of parties. I’m thinking it might make a great teacher gift or appetizer for their holiday performance celebration.

You could do this with any cheese ball recipe – the key is to keep the innards white, so that when you cut into it, it looks like an apple slice.

Spiced Apple Cheese Ball

adapted from My Recipes

2 cups grated white Cheddar or Gouda
1 8 oz (250 g) package cream cheese, softened
1 tsp. garlic powder
pinch red pepper flakes
paprika
half a cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf

In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the cheeses, garlic powder and red pepper flakes until well blended. Shape the mixture into a ball, tapering it a bit at the bottom, and make an indentation in the top to resemble an apple. Chill for 30 minutes.

Coat the ball heavily with paprika; cover and chill 1 hour. Insert cinnamon stick and bay leaf into indentation to resemble apple stem and leaf. Serve with crackers.

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