So, here is the plan: Tom and I are going to eat a TON of vintage appetizers on New Year’s Eve.
What do you think? Good plan?
This plan has been…oh…several weeks in the making. Originally, I was going to post a vintage appetizer a week for twelve weeks, but when that plan fell through due to my crappy food-planning skills and Tom deciding that Pork Cake trumped all other plans, I decided to wing it. So, instead of twelve posts you are only going to get like…four. But one of them is going to be of our rockin’ retro New Year’s Eve table, so it will all even out*.
*No, it won’t even out. Ever.
But that’s okay. You know why? Because we have Party Cheese Ball!
See? Don’t you feel better already?
I have to admit that if I’d be lying if said I had any doubts about whether or not this cheese ball would be good. I KNOW it’s good. It’s freaking good. And it’s good every year at Christmas when my mom makes it. It’s the first thing to disappear off of her table and the last thing we stop talking about. But the magical thing about this post is that I found the recipe for it in a vintage pamphlet!
Why is this so amazing? Well, it’s amazing because for years my mom has been winging it with the recipe. It was something my grandmother made during the holiday, but never wrote down, so my mom had to roll up her sleeves and recreate the recipe from scratch. There was a lot of experiments (which we were happy to eat) before she got it close enough to satisfy her, but I think she did a darn good job. Her recreated recipe is almost exactly the same as this one I found in the Good Food Ideas from The Kraft Kitchens pamphlet from 1971. The only difference was that my mom used red and green bell peppers instead of green bell pepper and pimiento.
So, to kind of make up for the fact that I am not posting as many appetizers as originally planned, I thought I would give you one really good vintage one, one fool-proof recipe that you can add to your New Year’s Eve table this year and not be ashamed to say that it is a retro recipe.
But just wait until people try it before you tell them that it retro. Whenever I tell anyone that what they are eating was featured on the Mid-Century Menu, they slowly lower their bite and look at it suspiciously, as if they are expecting to find mid-century mold or something. Wait until they eat a couple bites and they are hooked. Then tell them.
However, even though we know this one is a winner, this just wouldn’t be the MCMenu unless I showed Tom stuffing his gourd.
It’s recommended that you use two hands when eating Party Cheese Ball. It shovels in faster that way.
The Verdict: Really, really good! The cheddar kind of melts into the cream cheese and is just yummy, and the bits of green pepper and onion add a nice crispness to it. Best with Ritz crackers and is a great retro addition to a party table!
I love this! The Triscuit box used to have a recipe alot like this, but with blue cheese–I swear it is exactly the same, but subbed in that cheese instead (it was always a monster success), you are making my mouth water just thinking about these crazy cheese balls!
Hey Jen O! Nice to hear that this recipe was kept in circulation, in any form. It’s a great one and deserves to be served forever.
And it sounds like you are going to need to make this now! 🙂
Oh yum! I’m going to make the Mister one for New Year’s Eve. His family always has the presenting of the cheeseball. Then they all stand around oohing and ahhing and then it’s game on! This might help make him feel like he’s in Kansas. 🙂
I am so gonna make this, Mike will go crazy for it!!!! Yay for yummy Cheese Balls! 🙂
I just made it, your post was that convincing! And the pre-chilling taste test made me want to eat multiple spoonfuls so I can’t wait for it to be balled and properly crackered.
Awesome, Elise! Glad to hear you liked it!
It’s so weird that you made this! This is Keith’s Mom’s recipe, and I’ve been making it every Christmas since we’ve been together. It is a sad day, indeed, when we finish the cheese ball. Sadder, even, than taking down the Christmas decorations.
But you know what we discovered on New Year’s Eve? That you can make Party Cheeseball even more awesome. How?
Seriously. I put some in a little Corningware dish and baked it at 350 for maybe 15 minutes, until it got bubbly and brownish on top. Totally awesome with Triscuits and Fritos Scoops. We couldn’t shovel it in fast enough.
Oh my god, Veg, you are a GOD! That is the most awesome idea I have ever heard. You bet your boots I am going to try it!
And yes, this cheeseball might be the world’s most perfect Mid-Century Holiday food. 🙂
Oh my god! This is my first time making home made cheese dip! I made it tonight as a snack for my husband and I and this is amazing!!! I will make this more often so delicious!! Thank you!! =)
My family still makes a variation of this, and it’s always a hit.
24 oz cream cheese (chilled is best)
6 or so green onions (cut fine, white park included)
1 jar of chipped beef, cut fine (little chunks/squares are good)
1 tsp of accent (can leave this part out)
enough Worcestershire sauce to turn the cheese a light brown when thoroughly mixed
Mix by hand. Chill. Enjoy on ritz crackers. Also really good on gluten free crackers. 🙂
I tried this at an ex-boyfriend’s house one Christmas and now I can recreate it! The one I had (prepared by true Southern women so you know it was good) was rolled in pecans which made it a little hard to eat without a spoon, but made it look so lovely. I remember her saying she would make a few before the holidays and that they would freeze well.
Love your blog!
This is reeeeeeally close to my family’s Traditional Cheeseball Recipe. The main differences are that instead of just sharp cheddar in with the cream cheese, it’s explicitly “a mix of as many kinds of cheese as you can find”. And instead of the veggies we put in sliced green olives.
I might try the sliced scallions from above next time though. That sounds amazing.
I’d love to try this, what kind of onions work best for this?
Any kind! My mom usually uses scallions!
This brings back many memories of my teens and early marriage…cheese balls were the rage! We had several that were rolled in chopped pecans or walnuts, and one that had dried chipped beef pressed into the surface of the cheese ball. Thanks for bringing back the memories!
I made a cheese ball for Christmas week. It was a hit. Everyone took a bite or 7. I used 2 boxes of cream cheese, 1 C of cheddar, 2 whole green chiles, finely chopped, 1 box of pre-cooked bacon, finely chopped, 1 C finely minced olives, 5, finely chopped green onions, and salt. So good!