According to author and recipe tester extraordinaire Amanda Hesser, this cheese ball was introduced in 2003, when the classic appetizer had moved out of the mainstream and into the world of the deliciously ironic. Cream cheese and goat cheese are whipped together with a whole slew of bright, thrilling flavors: lemon zest, cumin, coriander, fresh mint, and thinly sliced celery hearts.
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Cheese and crackers is always on the party potluck signup sheet; a boring ol' standby. Try the retro ball-shaped snack instead, and fancy it up with combos like cheddar and pecans, Stilton and walnuts, and chevre and almonds. They're fun to serve as bite-sized canapes or as a single large ball surrounded by crackers and crudite. Plus, they always make the vegetarians happy.
OK, so you read my post last week about crafting an American cheese plate for Thanksgiving, and you said to yourself, "I would love to eat that, but my family won't touch it unless it comes wrapped in individual plastic sheets." Well then maybe it's time to go plan B and make a bacon-covered artisanal cheeseball. This has got to be literally the cheesiest appetizer you could possibly serve to your guests, and yet how could anyone complain about something that combines cheese and bacon?...