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Festive Baked Cheese


Last night the ladies from our church held their annual Christmas party.  And, as tradition, each woman was to bring an appetizer to share with the group.  As this is the 5th year of my attendance, so I was certain this was the event to showcase my newest cheese in all its glory.  Thus, I made a sweet nut and fruit topping to offset the pungent warm cheese that was to be baked underneath...and it was a huge hit.

To make this wonderful cheese, first you need to make one recipe of the French Neufchatel from my previous post and have the following ingredients on hand:
  •  One, room temperature, large French Neufchatel cheese
  • 3/4 cup SUCANAT
  • 1 cup shelled pistachios, after measured chopped roughly
  • 1 1/4 cups sweetened cranberries
Next, you need to put 3/4 cup SUCANAT and 3/4 cup water into a pan and whisk while heating over medium heat until it comes to a boil.  Boil then for 2 more minutes, while continuing to stir.

Next, add the pistachios and cook them in the sugar sauce for another minute.



Then remove the mixture from the stove and let cool to room temperature.  If you are in a hurry you could transfer the mixture to a cooler container or even pop the entire pan in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.

When the mixture is cool, add in the cranberries.



Then place the cheese into a large pie plate...



...top it with the nut and fruit mixture...




...then bake at 350 for about 25 minutes.

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