I am planning our traditional Christmas Eve Party in which my entire family comes over for a pre-celebration and so the kiddos can open a gift early… it’s something we have done for years. But something is nagging at me this year that it’s time to switch up some of our favorite traditional dishes! I revamped the dessert menu and my husband is anxious to try a new ham glaze instead of our usual honey mustard and brown sugar… but I was stuck on the appetizers! How could I do things differently while making sure everything was still delicious? I mean, Christmas Eve family get-togethers are NOT the time that you want to “experiment” and find that that fancy recipe actually tastes like crap… do you know what I mean, or do you know what I mean!? So I searched simple snacks that I could prepare ahead of time to test out before serving it to my lovely mother and father (the Rachel Ray and Chef Ramsey of the family) and once I tasted this new spin on a cheese ball, I looked no farther!! Seriously. If you try something new this year, make sure this is it!!!
This Feta Cheese Snowball with Olive Relish is a piquant combination that redefines cheese spreads. It includes a bed of garlic-infused mixed olives and red bell peppers that complement the creamy feta cheese ball perfectly. And this is all you need to make it:
- 1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened*
- 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped pine nuts or slivered almonds, toasted**
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped onion
- Keebler® Town House® Original crackers
- 3/4 cup pitted kalamata or other black olives, sliced
- 3/4 cup pitted green olives, sliced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano or 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
*Soften cream cheese in microwave at high for 15 to 20 seconds.
**To toast pine nuts or almonds, spread evenly on baking sheet. Bake at 350°F for 5 to 10 minutes or until light golden brown, stirring once or twice.
- Beat cream cheese and feta cheese in a small mixing bowl on medium speed of electric mixer until fluffy. Stir in pine nuts or almonds and onion. Using plastic wrap, shape into ball. Wrap. Refrigerate at least 2 hours.
- Stir together in a small bowl black olives, green olives, parsley, oregano, bell pepper, oil, lemon juice and garlic.
- Place cheese on serving platter. Surround with olive mixture. Serve with crackers.
This recipe serves 28 and takes 20 minutes to prepare!
Everyone will thank you!!