Monday, December 30, 2013

Cranberry Jalapeno Cheese Spread

 Having a party? Here's the perfect appy for you! It's sort of like the same sweet and spicy vibe as Jezebel, but just slightly different and equally as delicious! It's also one of those new and different fun things that makes people say "really??" when you tell them what's in it. It's a snap to make, and it's a total do-ahead, so you'll have plenty of time for all of your last minute running. Better make a double batch because it'll disappear in no time flat!

1 8oz pkg cream cheese
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1/4 cup sugar
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded, finely chopped
1/4 tsp ground cumin
2 tbs freshly squeezed lime juice
a few shakes crushed red pepper flakes
salt and pepper to taste

Place the cream cheese in the center of a large serving plate. (you can use a spatula to spread it out a bit, if you like). Generously sprinkle freshly cracked black pepper over the cheese.
In a mixing bowl, stir together all remaining ingredients. Pour cranberry mixture over cream cheese. Serve as a spread with crackers. That's all there is to it! Simple, huh?

It's best to make the cranberry mixture ahead of time so that the flavors can mingle. I like to make it the day before, (if possible) or at least a few hours. Store in the fridge until you're ready to serve.
Adjust the amounts to suit your own tastes! If you like a lot of any one ingredient, go for it! And if you're all about the heat, try adding another kind of hot pepper such as Serrano in addition to the Jalapeno peppers.
I think its best served with a slightly salty cracker, such as original Wheat Thins or Triscuits.
This recipe can easily be doubled if you're feeding a crowd!

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