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Pecan Cheddar Cheese

Heavenly Pecan Cheddar Cheese Ring with Strawberry Preserves: A Perfect Blend of Sweet and Savory

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Are you looking for a show-stopping appetizer that will impress your guests at your next gathering? Look no further than our Pecan Cheddar Cheese Ring with Strawberry Preserves! This delightful dish combines the rich flavors of sharp cheddar cheese and toasted pecans with the sweetness of strawberry preserves, all wrapped up in a creamy, indulgent dip. Whether you’re hosting a holiday party, a brunch, or simply craving a delicious snack, this recipe is sure to be a hit. So, let’s dive in and learn how to make this mouthwatering treat!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, finely shredded
  • 1 cup cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 3/4 to 1 cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped
  • 1 cup strawberry preserves

Instructions:

  1. Preheat Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. Mix Cheeses and Mayonnaise: In a large mixing bowl, combine the shredded sharp cheddar cheese, softened cream cheese, and mayonnaise. Mix until smooth and well combined.
  3. Add Seasonings: Stir in the garlic powder, paprika, and cayenne pepper (if using), ensuring that the seasonings are evenly distributed throughout the mixture.
  4. Fold in Pecans: Gently fold in the toasted and finely chopped pecans until they are evenly distributed throughout the cheese mixture.
  5. Form into Ring: Transfer the cheese mixture to a round baking dish or mold, shaping it into a ring with a hollow center. Use your hands or a spatula to smooth the surface and create an even ring shape.
  6. Bake: Place the baking dish in the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and lightly golden brown on top.
  7. Serve: Remove the cheese ring from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes before serving. Spoon the strawberry preserves into the center of the ring, allowing guests to dip the cheesy goodness into the sweet preserves.
  8. Enjoy: Serve the Pecan Cheddar Cheese Ring with Strawberry Preserves alongside crackers, sliced baguette, or fresh fruit for a delicious and satisfying appetizer experience.

Cook Notes and Variations:

  • Variation: For a twist on this recipe, try substituting the strawberry preserves with your favorite fruit jam or jelly, such as raspberry, apricot, or fig.
  • Make-Ahead Option: You can prepare the cheese mixture ahead of time and refrigerate it until you’re ready to bake. Simply cover the dish with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before baking.
  • Toasting Pecans: To toast the pecans, spread them out on a baking sheet in a single layer and bake in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for 8-10 minutes, or until fragrant and lightly browned. Be sure to watch them closely to prevent burning.

Keto and Low-Carb Versions:

  • Keto-Friendly Option: Substitute the mayonnaise with full-fat Greek yogurt or sour cream, and use a sugar-free fruit preserve to reduce the carb content. You can also serve the cheese ring with low-carb crackers or vegetable sticks for dipping.
  • Low-Carb Variation: Omit the strawberry preserves altogether and serve the Pecan Cheddar Cheese Ring on its own as a low-carb appetizer option. You can also reduce the amount of mayonnaise used in the recipe for a lighter version.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Q: Can I use different types of cheese in this recipe? A: Yes, feel free to experiment with different cheeses to customize the flavor of the dish. Gouda, Swiss, or Monterey Jack would all work well in place of the sharp cheddar cheese.

Q: Can I make this recipe nut-free? A: If you have a nut allergy or prefer not to use pecans, you can omit them from the recipe altogether. The cheese ring will still be delicious without them.

Q: How should I store leftovers? A: Store any leftover cheese ring in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat individual servings in the microwave or enjoy them cold straight from the fridge.

Our Pecan Cheddar Cheese Ring with Strawberry Preserves is the perfect combination of sweet and savory, making it an ideal appetizer for any occasion. Whether you’re hosting a party or simply treating yourself to a special snack, this recipe is sure to delight your taste buds and impress your guests. With its creamy cheese filling, crunchy pecans, and fruity strawberry preserves, it’s a flavor-packed dish that’s easy to make and even easier to enjoy. So, why not give it a try at your next gathering? Your friends and family will thank you!

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