Keyword: cheese balls, game day, hors d'oeuvres, olives, party food
Prep Time: 30minutes
Cook Time: 20minutes
Refrigerated Time: 1hour
Total Time: 50minutes
Little cheese ball puffs stuffed with manzanilla olives -- great for Halloween, or cover the whole olive in cheese pastry for a delicious hot appetizer for any occasion. Based on a recipe by Betty Crocker.
1/8teaspoon cayenne pepperor more if you like heat
3 cupsshredded cheddar cheese
48-60smallpimento stuffed manzanilla olives(can use kalamata, too)
In a large bowl, combine the flour, mustard and cayenne pepper. Whisk to combine. Add the cheddar cheese and stir to coat the cheese.
Make a well in the center of the cheese mixture and add the melted butter. Use a wooden spoon to combine the flour, cheese, butter mixture. The mixture will become harder to stir and that's when you use your hands to fully combine the cheese dough.
Drain the olives and pat dry with a paper towel.
Scoop 1 teaspoon of dough and shape it around the olive, taking care to allow the pimento and part of the olive to show through the dough. Transfer to a baking sheet. Continue to form "eyeballs" with the rest of the dough and olives.
Refrigerate for one hour before baking. While the olives chill, preheat the oven to 400°. Bake the cheese olive bites for 15-20 minutes or until golden and puffy. Transfer to a platter and serve.
MAKE AHEAD AND FREEZER DIRECTIONS:
Can be made ahead to this point and frozen, not touching in a single layer for two hours or until solid. Transfer to a freezer bag and keep frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw before baking, using the baking instructions above.