Tennis, anyone? (Recipes)

Last week I was invited to play tennis with the ladies, and unfortunately, managed to smack two of them with my serve during our match. The rule is, if you hit someone with a tennis ball, you have to buy them a drink. So I invited the tennis group over for our Friday TGIF and served:

The Tennis Ball (pictured above)

  • 1 ounce Midori
  • 2 ounces Vodka (I used citrus flavored, plain would be good too)
  • 2-3 ounces Fresca (to taste)

Shake the Midori and Vodka together in cocktail shaker with ice. Pour into a highball glass with ice, and add Fresca to taste. Serve.

Sweet Cheese Ball
Sweet Cheese Ball
Sweet Cheese Ball

Savory cheese balls are common in our neck of the woods, especially for 50’s-themed cocktail parties. For this event, I wanted something that would pair well with (green-tinted) coconut, so I found a few recipes for sweet cheese balls and came up with this variation. Next time, I would try pineapple bits instead of maraschino cherries.

  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 3 drops green food coloring, plus 2 TBS water
  • 2 packages cream cheese, 8 ounces each, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped fine
  • 10 maraschino cherries, chopped fine

In a medium bowl, mix food coloring with water. Add in coconut and stir until color is uniform. Spread out on a tray with paper towels to dry.

Beat cream cheese until light, then add sugar and continue to beat until smooth. Using a spoon or flexible spatula, mix in pecans and cherries.

Gather up the cheese mixture and form into a ball. Place in the middle of the coconut tray, and pat coconut all around the ball. It may seem messy and difficult to do, but the coconut sticks really well and the cheese ball will keep its shape. Once you have it coated with as much coconut as you want, put it on a serving plate and stick the cheese ball in the fridge for 1 hour, or until serving. Decorate to resemble a tennis ball, if desired.

Serve with apples or other fresh fruit, pretzels, crackers or anything else that works well with sweet cheese. Bagels, perhaps?

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