The Thoughtful Baker’s Gluten Free Festive Holiday Cheese Spread
8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese (can use reduced fat or a combo of reg and reduced*)
8 ounces shredded Swiss cheese (can use reduced fat or a combo of reg and reduced*)
3Tbl diced green bell pepper
3 Tbl diced red bell pepper
3 Tbl finely sliced green onions
Toss above ingredients together
Combine the following ingredients in a bowl and stir:
3 Tbl reduced fat, gluten free mayonnaise (Kraft makes a gluten free version) and 1/4 cup very soft Neufchatel cheese (a reduced fat cream cheese alternative), mixed together
3/4 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp chopped capers
3/4 tsp finely minced jalapeno, seeds and ribs removed (or more to taste)
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
2-3 Tbl Dijon mustard
3/4 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
3-4 Tbl fresh chopped cilantro (if you don’t like cilantro use parsley)
Fresh ground pepper
Salt to taste
Combine the cheese mixture with the mayo and spice mix to blend. Before molding, taste and adjust seasonings if you want stronger flavors. Remember the flavors will meld together overnight and be more pronounced. Line a 1 quart bowl with plastic wrap and overlap over edges. Pack the cheese mix into the bowl firmly and fold over plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.
Unmold by opening wrap and placing a plate over the bowl- invert and carefully remove wrap.
Decorate with chopped fresh cilantro and chopped red bell pepper sprinkled over the cheese ball. Serve with red and green bell pepper strips and if you like gluten free rice crackers (or cracker of your choice).
If you prefer, you can put the mix in a decorative bowl to serve out of instead of a mold.
*Do not use fat free cheese. The reduced fat cheese allows a healthier version but will still produce a good product.