Way back when…when we made this cheese ball I thought I couldn’t possibly taste a better cheese ball in my life. The combination of the two cheddars and the garlic reminded me so much of this one cheese spread I used to snack on at The General Store In Long Grove. They would always have samples of soup, cheese with pretzels, and other nibbles. The cheese was so addicting! Anyways, the fact that this cheese ball was my favorite still holds sorta kinda true because technically today’s post is a cheese LOG. Thank goodness for technicalities…because these are both my favorites.
This Blue Cheese, Fruit and Nut LOG is a totally different recipe. Blue Cheese (well, we used Gorgonzola since we’re being technical) has a distinct, sharp and salty taste to it. I love it and so does my whole family, but it isn’t for everybody. The cream cheese gives it a smooth consistency and balances the strong flavor of the blue cheese. One of my new favorite ingredients is dates so adding those made me happy and the dried cranberries are an LLP go-to because they add a pop of sweet. I don’t want to forget the pistachios because pistachios are delicious and they add a crunchy, green layer. The overall combination was perfect!
The best part of this recipe was that we previously learned a valuable lesson and finally we got to demonstrate it A few months ago we made baklava and spent somewhere around 2 hours shelling several cups of pistachios. Kara’s fingers were blistery raw. It was a horrible! Rather then go through that again we stopped at TJ’s and picked up shelled pistachios. Umm DUH…total epiphany! What were we thinking before? That’s just it, We WEREN’T thinking!
4 ounces crumbled Gorgonzola
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon milk
10 dates, pits removed and roughly diced
1/3 cup dried cranberries
¼ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
pinch of salt and pepper
½ cup pistachios, shells removed and roughly chopped
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat Gorgonzola, cream cheese and milk until smooth. Add dates, cranberries, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Beat on medium speed until thoroughly mixed, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
Transfer cheese to a large square of plastic wrap and wrap tightly. Form into a log then pop in the fridge for at least 1 hour, or up to overnight.
Unwrap cheese log and gently press the pistachios into the log, coating the surface well. Place cheese log on a serving platter. Serve immediately with crackers of your choice.
Adapted from: The Novice Chef