Category Archives: Appetizer Party

Hasselback Potatoes

Hasselback Potatoes
My new favorite potato!

Hasselback Potatoes
Compliments of JennaDish

Use about 2 medium to 4 small potatoes per serving, and about 1 garlic clove per 2 or 3 potatoes

Yellow Potatoes (or Yukon Gold Potatoes)
salt & pepper
garlic cloves, sliced thin or minced
your favorite spice blend for potatoes (I used Penzey's Arizona Dreamin' Spice Blend)
Curry ketchup, optional (squeeze ketchup in a small dish and stir in a pinch of curry powder) 

Wash potatoes.  Make slices into each potato every 1/8" inch, only cutting down to 3/4 of the potato.  To make this easier, put the potato in a wooden spoon and slice the potato, allowing the spoon to stop the knife just short of cutting all the way through.  Place potatoes in large saucepan of cold water and bring to a boil.  Then lower the heat to keep the water at a low boil.  Boil about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  When the potatoes have boiled so they are about halfway cooked, drain them, and put them on a baking sheet in the oven to allow the heat to dry them – about 4-5 minutes. Remove them from the oven and allow to cool enough to handle. Then place pieces or slices of garlic clove into the potato slices – about 2-3 slices of garlic per potato.  Melt some butter or use oil to cover the potatoes.  Sprinkle salt, pepper and/or a spice blend on the potatoes.

Roast until cooked through, about 30 minutes, turning halfway through.  

Crispy Kale Chips

Our 6-Week Vegan Challenge

Crispy Kale Chips
Kale Chips

I've never had kale chips.  But these were awesome!  I was cramming these crispy, salty, flakes in my mouth like a mad woman.

And Alyssa loved them so much, she made 2 batches the next night.

Salty Kale Chips
BIG TIP:  1 teaspoon of kosher salt per bunch of kale was WAY too much for me.  See the oiled, crispy salt flakes piled on the kale above?

When Alyssa made her batches, I requested less salt, so she just lightly sprinkled some.  

So much better.   


Compliments of JennaDish

1 bunch kale, trimmed of center rib, washed and dried, cut into 1-2" pieces
1/4 -1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or big pinch
2 Tablespoons olive oil

Heat oven to 275o F.

Place cut pieces of kale evenly across a large cookie sheet.  Drizzle oil and sprinkle salt over the kale and toss well to distribute oil and salt evenly over the pieces.

Bake 10 minutes, turn and toss kale, then bake another 10 minutes.

Eat right away or let cool and store in an airtight container.


Crispy Potato Skins

Crispy Potato Skins
At 6am today, it was 90% humidity.  At 6pm when I took a walk through Mt. Adams, it was 45% humidity and I had to cut my walk in half with Allen and Gracie.

So today I decide to post a recipe that requires cranking the oven up to 450 degrees to crisp the potato shells.

Hmmm.  Well, it doesn't matter.  When we search for this on a cool day, it will be right here.  On May 7th.

Potato Skins with Cheddar and Bacon
The Flying Pig Marathon was yesterday.  30,000 people walked or ran by our high-rise over a few hours on a Sunday morning.  As for people-watching, it doesn't get any better. 

Our building is on a bend coming out of Eden Park, along the running path.  Therefore, someone years ago decided it would be a great idea to place a DJ in front of our building each year.  Sounds fun, right? It starts at 6:15am.  

So before we are anywhere near ready to wake up on a Sunday morning, three floors below our window, party songs like Thriller, Don't Stop Believin', and Born This Way play while we cringe and groan.  

There's no getting away from it.  Plus there are about 10 people out there jumping around to the songs and banging their clappers or, like last year, hula hooping.  


May 10,2010 …

Flying Pig May 12 2010

April 30, 2011 …


 May 6, 2012 …


Anyway, back to potatoes.  

Potato Skins with Onion Sour Cream
I made Onion Sour Cream as a topping. So tasty.

Potato Skins with Mashed Potato Sour Cream Topping
After baking the potatoes and scooping them out, you can save the innards for making mashed potatoes and topping the skins with it, to make it more of a meal.  Add Cheese and Bacon to your liking.


Crispy Baked Potatoes
Compliments of JennaDish

You can bake the potatoes ahead of time up to a day ahead and refrigerate until ready to use.


4 baking potatoes, scrubbed (about 1/2 pound each)
canola oil
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
4-6 strips bacon
Onion Sour Cream, optional (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Pierce potatoes several times with a knife or fork.  Bake about an hour or until a knife slides through potato easily.

Meanwhile fry your bacon and allow to drain and cool on a paper towel.  You can make the Onion Sour Cream now if using.

Remove potatoes from oven and allow to cool a few minutes.  Turn oven up to 450 degrees.  Cut potatoes in half. Scoop out the potato leaving about 1/4"-1/2" potato on the skin.  Lay skins on a rack over a broiler pan. Don't use a cookie sheet or it will get too hot and warp.

Brush skins on both sides with canola oil and sprinkle with salt.  Bake on middle rack for 10 minutes each side.  

Onion Sour Cream

1 cup sour cream (low fat is fine)
1 medium to large onion, chopped fine
olive oil or canola oil for frying pan
salt and pepper to taste

Heat a medium, non-stick skillet on medium low heat.  Saute onion for about 5-6 minutes until softened.  Remove onions from pan and allow to cool to room temperature before stirring it into the sour cream.  

Mini Quiches

Mini Quiches with Gruyere Cheese and Asparagus

Pot lucks. At work.

That's the topic today.  Let's knock out some quick contemporary poetry here.

Ode to the Office Pot Luck Baby Shower
by Jenna Atkinson

Brownies, chips, pop
Chips, pop, dip
Brownies, paper plates
More pop and chocolate cake

Hummus, dip, chips
Salad, pretzels, fruit
Cool veggie tray, that's mod
Chicken Sliders? There is a God!

Forgot the potato salad?
No worries
Lemon cupcakes, blueberry studded
Did you just say your kitchen flooded?

Baby diapers, baby quiches
Gift cards, buttercream frosting
Ow! Did I just step on a fork?
Congrats to all, back to work


Make these mini quiches for a party or potluck.  You can try different fillings and cheeses. If you want to use refrigerated pie dough, you'll need a double crust (two pie dough rounds).  Roll it out a little thinner on a floured surface, enough to cut twelve 2 3/4" diameter circles in each pie crust, 24 all together.  Grease the insides of the mini muffin pan since the refrigerated dough won't be as buttery as the pate brisee (homemade short crust) that is called for in the recipe.


Mini Quiches
Compliments of JennaDish

from Martha

1 bunch pencil asparagus, trimmed
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Salt and pepper
All-purpose flour, for work surface
Pate Brisee (below) or Ready made double pie crust
3 ounces finely shredded Gruyere cheese
2 ounces cooked ham, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a mini muffin pan if using a ready-made pie crust. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Cut 3 inches from the tip-ends of the asparagus; reserving remaining stalks for another use. Generously add salt to boiling water. Add asparagus and cook until just tender, about 2 minutes; Drain. Cut into 1/2-inch pieces; set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together milk, heavy cream, eggs, yolk, and nutmeg. Season with a pinch each of salt and pepper. Strain through a sieve into a medium bowl; set aside.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out pate brisee to slightly less than 1/8-inch thick. Using a 2 3/4-inch round cutter, cut out 24 rounds. Fit rounds into a 24-cup nonstick mini muffin tin. If the pate brisee becomes too soft to work with, place in refrigerator to chill for 15 minutes. Divide half of the cheese, evenly between the lined cups. Top with ham. Divide milk mixture evenly between cups. Top each with 3 to 4 pieces of asparagus. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Bake until puffed and golden brown, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately remove quiches from muffin tin and transfer to a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Pate Brisee

from Martha Stewart

Makes 1 double-crust or 2 single-crust 9- to 10-inch pies

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water

In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar. Add butter, and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 seconds.

With machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube. Pulse until dough holds together without being wet or sticky; be careful not to process more than 30 seconds. To test, squeeze a small amount together: If it is crumbly, add more ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Divide dough into two equal balls. Flatten each ball into a disc and wrap in plastic. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill at least 1 hour. Dough may be stored, frozen, up to 1 month.


Baked Buffalo Wings

These are the hot wings Alyssa made this year on New Year's Day.  Delish.


I got fancy with the empty Frank's RedHot bottle.

Baked Buffalo Wings
Compliments of JennaDish

from Leesah on

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
20 chicken wings
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup hot pepper sauce (such as Frank's RedHot®)

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, and lightly grease with cooking spray. Place the flour, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and salt into a resealable plastic bag, and shake to mix. Add the chicken wings, seal, and toss until well coated with the flour mixture. Place the wings onto the prepared baking sheet, and place into the refrigerator. Refrigerate at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

Whisk together the melted butter and hot sauce in a small bowl. Dip the wings into the butter mixture, and place back on the baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until the chicken is no longer pink in the center, and crispy on the outside, about 45 minutes. Turn the wings over halfway during cooking so they cook evenly.


Japanese Pork and Shrimp Pot Stickers

Japanese Pork and Shrimp Potstickers
Pork and Shrimp Pot Stickers

I wanted to take on the project of learning how to make Pot Stickers the old fashioned way.  No store-bought wrappers.  Went to the library and borrowed Asian Dumplings by Andrea Nguyen.  Since I'm a total newbie at this, it took a total of about 2 1/2 hours with constantly reading the cookbook and checking myself, so in the future the time should be cut way down.  Overall, I didn't mind spending the time on this project – it was actually fun.  

I made the filling first, then made the dough.  In the future, I will do the opposite.  If you make the dough first, it can sit in a bag softening while you make the filling.  The recipe says to let the filling sit out for 30 minutes at room temperature to allow the flavors to meld, but believe me, it will sit out and meld as you make the wrappers. 

The following photo captions won't make much sense until you read through the recipe.  But if you try the recipe, looking back at these photos may help to make sense of the instructions.  


After water was drawn out of this Napa cabbage, squeezed by hand and then with a clean cotton cloth.


If you are thinking of leaving out the shrimp, that's fine, but don't even think about leaving out the pork. It's fat is necessary for the method of cooking it requires.

My dough is probably a little on the dry side, probably because I used King Arthur's flour which oftentimes requires a bit more liquid than other flours would need.  But it still worked out fine…


Although I was concerned about my dough being dry, the recipe author explains that the dough should bounce back slowly when you press it with your finger, which it did.  


And what I didn't realize was that because the dough is made with hot water, when you leave it in the bag with the air expelled, it softens from the moisture and becomes easy to work with.


I cut the top off a zip-top bag and put a little flour in it or otherwise the dough sticks.  Then I put the little dough ball in the bag and used a saucepan to flatten the disk as flat as I could, about 1/8".  


Then you take each wrapper and, leaving a thicker "belly" in the center, roll the edges toward you while rotating the circle around 1/4 turn.  


Mine turned out to be somewhat irregular circles but it worked out just fine, especially for a beginner.  Pot stickers don't have to be pretty, nor perfect, to taste good.  The smaller disk in the back of this photo is one that hasn't been rolled out yet.  This shows the size difference you can expect.

The flavors of this filling were awesome.  Bought many of my Asian ingredients at Jungle Jim's over the weekend.

Pot Stickers

Not as beautiful as some, but certainly tasty.

Japanese Pork and Shrimp Pot Stickers
Compliments of JennaDish

from Asian Dumplings by Andrea Nguyen

MAKES 32 DUMPLINGS (4 as main course, 6-8 as appetizer)

2 cups lightly packed, finely chopped napa cabbage, cut from whole leaves (about 7 ounces or 3 leaves)
1/2 teaspoon plus 1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cloves garlic, minced and crushed into a paste (I minced only)
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
2 Tablespoons chopped Chinese chives or scallions (white and green parts)
6 ounces ground pork, fattier kind preferred, coarsely chopped to loosen
1/3 pound medium shrimp, shelled, deveined, and chopped (4 1/2 ounces net weight)
 Scant 1/4 teaspoon sugar
Generous 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 Tablespoons Japanese soy sauce or light (regular) soy sauce
1 Tablespoon sake (I used Sherry)
1 teaspoon sesame oil

10 ounces (2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour
About 3/4 cup boiling water 

Canola oil or sesame oil or a combination of both, for pan frying

5 Tablespoons Japanese soy sauce or light (regular) soy sauce
2 1/2 Tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1/2 to 1 teaspoon chile oil (optional)

Japanese hot mustard, Chinese hot mustard, or Colman's English mustard for dipping (optional)

In a large bowl, toss the cabbage with the 1/2 teaspoon salt.  Set aside for about 15 minutes to draw excess moisture from the cabbage.  Drain n a fine-mesh strainer, rinse with water, and drain again.  To remove more moisture, squeeze the cabbage in your hands over the sink, or put into a cotton (not terry cloth) kitchen towel and wring out the moisture over the sink.  You should have about 1/2 cup firmly packed cabbage.

TRANSFER THE CABBAGE to a bowl and add the garlic, ginger, Chinese chives, pork, and shrimp.  Stir and lightly mash the ingredients so that they start coming together.

IN A SMALL BOWL, stir together the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, the sugar, pepper, soy sauce, sake, and sesame oil.  Pour these seasonings over the meat and cabbage mixture, and then stir and fold the ingredients together.  Once you have broken up the large chunks of pork so none are visible, briskly stir to blend the ingredients into a cohesive, thick mixture.  To develop the flavors, cover with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes.  You should have about 2 cups of filling.  (Can prepare filling 1 day ahead – bring to room temperature before assembling the dumplings.)

MEANWHILE, form 16 wrappers from 1/2 the dough.  Aim for wrappers that are about 3 1/4 inches in diameter.  (This is where I found a glitch in this recipe.  It never mentions again to make another 16 wrappers with the remaining dough – but you WILL need to do this to use up all dough and filling.  When using only half the dough in the beginning, place the other half back in the plastic bag and remove all air, letting sit until needed.)

BEFORE ASSEMBLING the dumplings, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  (If you plan to refrigerate the dumplings for several hours, or freeze them, lightly dust the paper with flour to avoid sticking.)  For each dumpling, hold a wrapper in a slightly cupped hand. My simplified instructions: Scoop up about 1 tablespoon of filling and place in the center leaving just enough edge to pinch together – no fancy pattern.  I chose to make 24 fat dumplings so I put at least 1 tablespoon in each 3 1/4" diameter wrapper, and even when the filling oozed to the edge, the dough still pinched together just fine.

When finished with the first half, cover with a dry kitchen towel while making the other 16 (or 8) wrappers and filling.

ONCE ALL The dumplings are assembled, they can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated for several hours; they can be cooked straight from the refrigerator.  For longer storage, freeze them on their tray until hard (about 1 hour), transfer them to a zip-top freezer bag, seal well, and keep them frozen for up to 1 month; partially thaw, using your finger to smooth over any cracks that may have formed during freezing, before cooking.

TO PANFRY the dumplings, use a medium or large nonstick skillet (using skillets or pan with fitted lids work best), if both sizes are handy, cook two batches at the same time.  Heat the skillet over medium-high heat and put 1 1/2 – 2 Tablespoons oil (canola or 2 parts canola to 1 part sesame oil) in each pan.  Add the dumplings one at a time, placing them sealed edges up in a winding circle pattern or straight rows.  The dumplings may touch.  Fry 1-2 minutes until they're golden brown on the bottom.

HOLDING THE LID over the skillet (ready to protect yourself from the steam that is to come) add about 1/3 hot water to each skillet.  It will boil and sputter dramatically.  Put the lid on each skillet and lower the heat to medium and let the water bubble away until it si mostly gone, 8 to 10 minutes.  After 6-8 minutes, move the lid or foil so that is is slightly ajar to allow the steam to shoot out from underneath. This lessens the drama of condensation dripping down onto the hot oil when you remove the lid.

WHILE THE DUMPLINGS cook, combine the soy sauce, rice vinegar, and chile oil in a small bowl to create a dipping sauce.  Taste and make any flavor adjustments.

WHEN THE BUBBLING noise in the skillet turns into a gently frying sound (a sign that most of the water is gone), remove the lid.  Allow the dumplings to fry for another 1 to 2 minutes, or until the bottoms are brwon and crisp.  Turn off the heat and wait until the sizzling stops before transferring the dumplings to a serving plate, using a spatula to lift up a few of them at a time.  Display them with the bottoms up so that they remain crisp.

SERVE IMMEDIATELY with dipping sauce in a communal bowl or divided up among individual rice bowls or dipping bowls.  If serving hot mustard, use a separate bowl for this.


TO MAKE THE DOUGH (with food processor)

Put the 10 ounces (or 2 cups) flour in the work bowl of the food processor.  With the machine running, add 3/4 cup of water just-boiled water in a steady stream through the feed tube.  As soon as all the water has been added, stop the machine and check the dough.  It should look rough and feel soft but firm enough to hold its shape when pinched.  If necessary, add water by the teaspoon or flour by the tablespoon.  When satisfied, run the machine for another 5 to 10 seconds to further knead and form a ball around the blade.  Avoid overworking the dough.

Transfer the dough and any bits to a work surface; flour your work surface only if necessary, and then sparingly.  Knead the dough with the heel of your hand for about 30 seconds.  The result should be nearly smooth and somewhat elastic; press on the dough; it should slowly bounce back, with a light impression of your finger remaining. Place the dough in a zip-top bag and seal tightly closed, expelling excess air.  Set aside to rest at room temperture for at least 15 minutes and up to 2 hours.  The dough will steam up the plastic bag and become earlobe soft, making wrappers easy to work with.

After resting, the dough can be used right away to form the wrappers.  Or, refrigerate it overnight and return to room temperature before using.

When the dough is ready, take out, cut in half and work with the first half while the 2nd half goes back in the bag to keep soft.  Roll the dough you are starting to work with into a 1" log as even as possible.  Cut into 16 even pieces, shaping the dough into somewhat of a ball.  One by one, put the ball of dough between two pieces of wax paper or in a freezer bag dusted with a little flour, place on table and find a flat item such as a saucepan to flatten into a circle 1/8" thick.  Lay aside each round on non-stick paper until all are finished. 

Going back to each round, take a small rolling pin or dowel and, keeping away from the very center (leaving a nickel or quarter size area of thickness in the center), roll the wrapper from near center toward you, spin 1/4 turn, do the same all the way around until it's about 3 1/4" in diameter with a slightly thicker "belly" than the rest of the circle.

Happy Anniversary JennaDish!

I started this website to nourish my creative soul while getting my Master’s Degree in Education.  It kept me excited to learn many new dishes and to create a journal that my kids and grandkids may be interested in some day.

It was so much fun but now I’m on to new things.  Here are my two short anniversary videos of the fun food I created in my first 2 years. (spoiler alert: cute dog at the end of 1st Year video.) I hope you are fortunate enough to find time to do the things that make you happiest.  Because…

Everybody Has Something They Love to Do.


My Animoto Video

No Bake Peanut Butter Cherry Bombs


Now We're Talkin'!!!!

Honest Disclosure:  When I first made these, they were OK.  Great little non-Twinkie after school snack for small kids.  But I don't have any of those anymore (small kids that is).  So I tinkered with them a bit.  I imagined I had a test kitchen and kicked them up a notch for grown ups.

My test kitchen made plain on the left.  Mmm good for kids.  And I tried just adding cinnamon, which was also OK.  Cinnamon and ancho chili powder however made them almost party-worthy, great with an adult beverage.  Makes people say "What's in these?  They're pretty good!"  Ancho chili powder is milder than regular chili powder.  For awhile, ancho chili brownies were all the rage.  Especially when Oprah put out a recipe for them. 

You can use alternative cereal (I used Rice Krispies) or dried fruit.  Whatever you have on hand.

You could take these to a party in little cupcake papers.  They'd go great surrounding a fruit tray or something chocolate.

Didn't talk you out of it yet?  I hope not.  If you're looking for a no bake, healthy, quick snack that you can make for yourself, your kids or take to a gathering, these are fun!

No Bake Peanut Butter Cherry Bombs
Compliments of JennaDish

adapted from Martha Stewart

1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup peanut butter (natural pb is best)
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup dry cereal (I used Rice Krispies)
1 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup dried sweet cherries (or cranberries or apricots or dried banana chips)
pinches of cinnamon and / or chili powder as desired

In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together the honey, peanut butter and butter.  Heat until melted.

Combine cereal, oats and dried fruit in a medium bowl.  Pour the warm peanut butter mixture over the dry ingredients and gently combine.  Stir until all of the dry ingredients are evenly covered with pb mixture.

Use a small scoop to drop balls or stacks of the mixture onto a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Put in the fridge a few minutes to allow to chill enough to be able to form into balls.  Once formed, refrigerate or freeze until ready to use.  You can actually eat the snacks right out of the freezer.  If freezing, store in a freezer bag or plastic wrap tightly.  Use within a few days. 

Crab Cakes with Avocado Sauce


Dear Jillian

You walked yesterday in the 21st Annual Walk to Stop AIDS event with friends from school.  StopAids is "dedicated to educating the community about the continuing risk of HIV infection and providing competent, compassionate service to those already impacted by HIV/AIDS."  And this walk helps them get information out to people.  I love to see you involved in your community and helping good causes.

I'm so happy we moved to the city to be closer to your school.  I'm glad for all the the school has to offer, your friends, your awesome teachers. 

I'm thrilled that MTV's Taking the Stage


is gone.  Cute little show but the camera crew and shooting during school was a pain in the arse for teachers and students.

Well, anyway, Jillian.  I'm glad you're you.  Who's hungry?

Continue reading

Euchre Party Cheese Ball


 Welcome to another episode of

JennaDish Theatre

starring Jenna and her husband Allen

Jenna:    Do you think I should put a cheeseball recipe on my blog?

Allen:     Yeah, why not?

Jenna:    I don't know, I thought it might be like putting up a recipe for buttered toast.

Allen:     Well, I wouldn't know how the hell to make a cheese ball and I'm an AVID reader.

Is that love or what?



Ah the memories of life in my home state of Indiana in the 80s.  The euchre parties.  The cheeseballs.  The screwdrivers I drank.   Why shouldn't I post a recipe for a cheeseball?  Why should I deny the youngsters of today just because I first made this back in 1978? 

As a matter of fact, I've read some foodies "wax poetic" about their mothers' recipe collections.  Well, here it is girls!  Authentic euchre-worthy 1978 cheese ball.  And if you really want to go vintage, then you'll switch out the hoity-toity pecans and use some strips of packaged dried beef and paste them on the outside.  Buddig brand, as I recall.

Hey, look at my new apron that Alyssa and Jill picked up for me at their favorite vintage store.

Orange with brown fringe and BE MY GUEST is written all over it.  It's very Dale Rogers meets Beauty and the Beast.  Love it!

I bet Roy and Dale Rogers ate lots of cheese balls.  And Trigger too.

Euchre Party Cheese Ball
Compliments of JennaDish


Cheese balls taste better if you can make them the day before.  I like to make 2 smaller cheese balls out of this recipe so I can keep one fresh and refrigerated while the other is being eaten.  Then by the end of the evening it's not as dried out. 

1 pkg (12 oz) cream cheese (I used low fat)
1 jar Old English cheese spread or other Extra Sharp Cheddar spread, about 6-8 oz.
4-6 oz crumbled blue cheese
1-2 Tablespoons minced fresh onion
1 clove garlic, minced
pinch of cayenne pepper
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley or 2 Tablespoons dried parsley or cilantro
3/4 cup finely chopped pecans

In a medium bowl, combine cheeses, minced onion and garlic (I process them together in a mini food processor), cayenne pepper and parsley.   I recommend using a skinny rubber spatula to start mixing the dense cheese mixture together.  Or some nice clean hands.

Shape into one or two balls or logs, wrap well in plastic wrap and refrigerate several hours or overnight.  Before serving, place the chopped pecans in a shallow bowl and roll the cheese ball in them to cover the entire outside.  Use a spoon to gently press the nuts in place.  Keep refrigerated and covered until ready to serve.