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pesto cheese loaf

This Pesto Cheese Loaf recipe makes a delicious treat anytime, but it’s especially handy for
entertaining. Don’t be surprised if your guests beg you for the recipe as
my family’s friends did. I had to wrestle this one away from Mom, who,
I believe, had to wrestle it away from her friend Jeri. Serve the loaf with
your favorite whole-grain crackers.

Prep time: 30 minutes Serves 8

5 ounces crumbled blue cheese, softened
2 8-ounce containers reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
1 cup raw spinach leaves, packed
¾ cup fresh parsley, packed
6-8 fresh basil leaves
1 small clove garlic
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup pine nuts
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
¼ -½ cup sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped

To Make Cheese Mixture: In a medium-size bowl, stir together the blue
cheese and cream cheese until very spreadable; set it aside.

To Make Pesto: In a food processor, combine the spinach, parsley, basil,
and garlic. Slowly add the olive oil and pine nuts. Pulse until the nuts
are roughly chopped. Spoon the pesto mixture into a medium-size bowl.
Add the Parmesan and stir until thoroughly combined.

To Assemble Loaf: Spread thin layer of the cheese mixture on the bottom of an
8½ x 4½-inch glass loaf pan. Follow with a layer of pesto, then a sprinkle of
sun-dried tomatoes. Repeat, making 4 layers in all, ending with a thin layer
of cheese mixture on top. Serve immediately, or chill and serve later.

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