The best gifts are smoked...or valued by a figure with multiple zeros before the decimal point. But a home-smoked cheese log is special, incredibly delicious and inexpensive to make. Plus we threw in some bacon!
So gift it or just serve it at your holiday gathering. Everybody wins.
SMOKED BACON & CHEESE LOG
PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOK TIME: 1 hour
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Any
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 tablespoon Worchestershire sauce
1 teaspoon hot sauce
3 cups finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
8 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
2 green onions, finely diced
1 cup finely chopped pecans, toasted
In a mixing bowl, using an electric mixer or large spoon combine the cream cheese and the cheddar cheese.
Add in the Worchestershire sauce and hot sauce and mix again.
Lastly, add in the crumbled bacon and green onions and mix until combined.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours or until the cheese mixture is firm enough to mold. Shape it into a log and layer the outside with the toasted pecans. Cover with plastic wrap. Freeze the cheese log overnight to make sure it doesn't get too soft while it's smoking.
The next day start the Traeger on Smoke with the lid open until fire is established, 4 to 5 minutes.
Take the cheese log out of the freezer and unwrap. Place on a cooking sheet and smoke on the Smoke setting for 1 hour. (Keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn't get too soft. If you aren't using a cold smoker, you need to do this during the winter or late fall to prevent the cheese from melting apart.)
Move the cheese log to a serving tray and serve with your favorite crackers. (If the cheese is too soft, throw it in the fridge for an hour or two.)