Monday, May 11, 2015

Pineapple Cheese Spread

This is one of my favorite appetizer recipes.  It has been around as long as I can remember and is easy to make.  You can make it as a regular cheese ball, but in the last few years, I have been making it as a spread using low fat or fat free cream cheese.  The low fat cream cheese is less firm that full fat cream cheese so a spread seems to work better.

Pineapple Cheese Spread
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese
1 (8 oz) package fat free cream cheese
1 (8 oz) can crushed pineapple, drained well
1/4 cup green pepper, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons onion, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans

Drain pineapple extremely well, squeezing moisture out completely.  Cream both packages of cream cheese together with an electric mixer.  Add rest of the ingredients.  Cream all ingredients together on low speed with an electric mixer.  Serve as a spread with a variety of crackers.  My favorite crackers to serve with this spread are Triscuits.  Refrigerate leftovers.

How to Make a Cheese Ball Rather than a Spread
Use 2 packages of regular cream cheese rather than one regular and one fat free.  Use 2 cups of pecans rather than 1 1/2 cups.  Cream both packages of cream cheese together using an electric mixer.  Add the pineapple, green pepper, onion, seasoned salt, and only 1 cup of the pecans and blend together on low speed with your mixer.  Roll the cheese mixture into a ball and refrigerate for a time to firm it up.  Roll the ball in the remaining 1 cup of pecans.  Serve as a cheese ball with a variety of crackers.  Refrigerate leftovers.

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