So if one festive appetizer for the holidays is good, two are better, right? To go along with my Firecracker Chicken I posted about yesterday, I decided something blue would be nice to serve alongside all the red from the strawberries. A friend was telling me about a blueberry cheese ball her mom makes and so I did some searching on Google to see what I could find. I didn’t find many recipes, but of those I did, many of the cheese balls were more like cheesecakes… meant to be more a sweet dessert than sweet/savory appetizer with crackers. So I came up with my own combination so I can keep my original recipe category fresh and interesting.
I liked the idea of dried blueberries for their more concentrated sweetness. They needed to hold their own in combination with salty feta cheese and bright, peppery red onion. A cream cheese base, a little fresh basil, a splash of apple cider vinegar and plenty of toasted pecans rounds out this fresh and festive take on the typical cheese ball. It obviously doesn’t need to be reserved for the Fourth of July, but it’s blueish-purple hue make it more than appropriate for red, white and blue themed events.
This fresh spread was particularly good atop the “Some Enchanted Crackers” from Trader Joe’s. Triscuits, pita chips or even pretzel thins would also be good accompaniments.
Whatever you have planned for the holiday, I hope you are surrounded by lots of good food, family, friends and fun! Here’s a couple of other recipe ideas for all your patriotic party needs. And don’t forget to pin and print my recipe for this fresh Blueberry Cheeseball. Enjoy!
- 1 pkg. (3.5 oz.) dried blueberries
- 1 c. boiling water
- 2 bay leaves
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 c. feta cheese, crumbled
- 1/4 c. onion, minced
- 2 T. fresh basil, minced
- 1/4 t. dried thyme
- pinch of salt
- 3/4 c. pecans, finely chopped and toasted
- In a glass bowl, pour the boiling water over the dried blueberries and bay leaves and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Discard the bay leaves and drain the blueberries.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the softened cream cheese, blueberries, feta cheese, onion, basil, thyme and salt. Mix on low until well combined, then beat on medium for about one minute.
- Form cheese mixture into a ball shape and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Allow to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Can be made 1 day in advance.
- Before serving, roll the cheeseball in the toasted pecans until it is evenly coated. Serve with crackers.