Remember Cheese Balls?
Maybe your mother or grandmother (or you) made them once-upon-a-time? They were popular in the 1950s, right up there with Deviled Eggs and Franks-in-blankets. But those two items never went out of style. Especially Franks-in-blankets, the downscale hors d’oeuvre people like to sneer at but are always the first to be gobbled at any gathering.
Anyway, Cheeseballs didn’t hang on the way the other two nibbles did.
Maybe it’s nostalgia for some lost, long-ago time, but Cheeseballs are back in style. They’re a terrific hors d’oeuvre for New Year’s or any kind of cocktail party or with before-dinner drinks. They’re easy to make and extremely versatile — add herbs, spices, chopped fruits or vegetables; use different kinds of cheeses, roll them in different coatings for a better visual effect: bread crumbs, crushed nuts, chopped parsley, paprika, crushed peppercorns and what have you.
And if you think Cheeseballs are, well, too cheesy for your guests, make them smaller and call them truffles.
After all, what’s in a name?
8 ounces blue cheese
8 ounces cream cheese
4 ounces fresh pineapple, finely chopped, including juices
2 teaspoons finely chopped jalapeno or serrano pepper
sea salt, seasoned salt or Adobo seasoning to taste
chopped nuts, chopped parsley, paprika, breadcrumbs
Mash the blue cheese, cream cheese, pineapple and jalapeno pepper together until the ingredients are evenly distributed. Season to taste if desired with sea salt, seasoned salt or Adobo seasoning. Shape the mixture into small balls about 1-inch in diameter. Roll the balls in one or more of the toppings. Makes about 4 dozen