By Karin Calloway

Karin Calloway is a working mom living in Augusta, Ga., with multiple freelance jobs and a ton of dirty dishes.

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Cranberry-Blue Cheese Ball

Thanksgiving dinner, holiday parties, teachers and hostess gifts – aren’t we all looking for a quick yet special recipe for these occasions? With just a few ingredients you can create a delicious and festive treat for gift giving or entertaining that highlights one of the staples of the season – cranberries.

My Cranberry-Blue Cheese Ball combines just four ingredients with delicious results. Cubes of white cheddar cheese go right into the food processor where just a few pulses will break the cheese up into fine bits. Next, the remaining ingredients – crumbled blue cheese, a hunk of softened reduced-fat cream cheese and a package of sweetened dried cranberries are added. The food processor does all the work for you, and you’ll just need to scrape the bowl down a few times to evenly distribute the ingredients.

If you don’t have a food processor, don’t despair – you can whip up this cheese ball by hand. Simply shred the white cheddar cheese, and then use a wooden spoon to stir in the remaining ingredients.

Forming your cheese and cranberry mixture into a ball is as easy as dumping the mixture out onto a sheet of plastic wrap, gathering up the corners and molding into a large round. For hostess or teacher’s gifts, you can divide the recipe into two balls.

  • 4 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese, cut into cubes
  • 1 8-ounce hunk reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
  • 4 ounces crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 6-ounce bag sweetened dried cranberries*
Place cheddar cheese in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse until cheese is coarsely chopped. Add remaining ingredients and process until well combined. Lay a large piece of plastic wrap on a flat surface. Scoop cheese mixture out onto plastic wrap, gather up the corners of the plastic wrap and form into a ball. Refrigerate overnight. Let sit at room temperature 30 minutes before serving.

Makes 12 servings.

*Ocean Spray Craisins original sweetened dried cranberries were used for testing purposes.