Always Ready For The Unexpected Party
It’s a weekend of celebration. There are birthdays and holidays and family gatherings to attend. It always seems like just one more unexpected gathering is cropping up at times like these. How can you do it all? My answer is the crudite platter. Carrots, celery, broccoli and other raw veggies are always on hand at our house. It’s how you arrange things and what you dip them in that makes them more than rabbit food.
For a crowd of about 15 I do a platter that has a pretty sunburst pattern with a delicious home made cheese ball to scoop the veggies into. This cheese ball is made with
- 2 eight oz. packages of cream cheese softened
- 8 oz shredded cheddar cheese divided in half
- 1/4 cup ranch salad dressing
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp minced dried onion
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp dried parsley flakes
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
Combine in a mixing bowl the cheese reserving half of the shredded cheddar on a piece of foil or wax paper, dressing and Worcestershire until well blended. Add the remaining ingredients and again combine until all is a uniform color. Cover with film or foil and chill for at least 30 minutes. When cheese is firm again use a large spoon and shape the mixture into a ball. Remove to ball to the reserved cheese on foil and roll it around until it is completely covered and no cream cheese shows through. Pack on as much as will stick and place it on a saucer to further chill. Garnish it with bits of red pepper, green onion, parsley, sliced olives, or leave it plain…what ever will make you happy. Arrange your vegetables or perhaps crackers around the ball and be well received at your gathering.
For a larger crowd, cut up more vegetables and make a dip that will net you some compliments as well. For this dip you will need many of the same ingredients except no cheddar cheese, instead 8 oz sour cream. and several pieces of roasted red peppers from a jar. I use all the the other ingredients listed above otherwise but this dip gets mixed in the food processor. It comes out to be an appetizing color and the taste is as fresh as the vegetables themselves. Enjoy your holidays and gatherings this weekend and may God bless you!