Pumpkin Shaped Cheese Ball

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Pumpkin Shaped Cheese Ball is about as cute as you can get for Thanksgiving.  It is a perfect starter and can be prepared days in advance except for the cheese cracker coating.  The addition of pickle relish and apricot jam may sound odd, however it really adds a special touch.

Ingredients:

2 packages of softened cream cheese
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 scallion minced or two teaspoons snipped chives
1 tablespoon green or red pepper diced fine
2 tablespoons apricot preserves
2 teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce
2 tablespoons pickle relish
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
pinch of turmeric
1 cup crushed cheese crackers

1.  Mix all ingredients, except the cheese cracker crumbs, until uniform.  Shape into a ball,  wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour to 5 days.

2.  Roll in crushed cheese crackers, make vertical indentation pumpkin lines.

3.  Top the ball with a pepper stem or zucchini squash stem and a bay leaf.

Leave out at room temperature at least 30 minutes before serving. Serve with crackers.

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