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Buttery Blue Cheese Spread with Walnuts

Yield about 5 cups (24 appetizer servings)
Blue cheese and toasted walnuts are one of those amazing culinary matches, but here the richness goes one step further. There's a splash of sherry and a generous amount of softened butter in this cheese spread. Freeze it for up to a month in advance. 

Ingredients

  • 3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 (4-ounce) package crumbled blue cheese
  • 1/2 cup diced walnuts, toasted
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh chives
  • 1/4 cup cream sherry (optional)
  • 1 (16-ounce) round bread loaf
  • Garnishes: toasted diced walnuts, chopped fresh chives, rosemary sprigs

How to Make It

  1. Stir together first 5 ingredients and, if desired, sherry in a large bowl; cover and chill mixture 8 hours. Let stand at room temperature to soften; or freeze spread up to 1 month, and thaw in the refrigerator for 8 hours.

  2. Hollow out bread loaf, leaving a 1-inch-thick shell; reserve inside of loaf for other uses. Spoon softened cheese spread into shell. Garnish, if desired. Serve with sliced apples and pears or with toasted French baguette slices.