This is a crazy recipe. It may be one of my best recipes. It’s certainly one I’m most proud of, which is funny in that it comes from a place relatively outside my personal culinary sphere.
For whatever reason, I see the traditional cheese log as being something... well... cheesy! Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the flavor and have parked myself next to one many a time in the past. I just can’t help but picture them as something one would place a frantic last-minute order for, from the local grocery store deli... for the company party... in 1983
. They just seem a bit like a relic from the past.
So, in knowing the recipe is created a bit tongue-in-cheek and knowing full well that it’s already kind of a silly thing, I opted to really challenge myself and have some fun with it. Oh, did I ever!
This thing ended up outrageous. The color, texture and flavor were absolutely perfect. The log also nailed the complementary salty-sweet parmesan crackers. If you’re going to bring a cheese log to a gathering, THIS is the one to bring. Seriously!
So, what is it? Glad you asked!
This starts by simmering fresh blackberries with sweetener and some xylitol honey. This is cooked until the mixture is soft. I pureed it, then strained out the seeds. I then whipped the blackberry puree into fresh butter and formed a cylinder with plastic wrap. I chilled this. Then, I created a separate mixture of mascarpone cheese and cream cheese, with a bit of sweetener and salt. I spread this on another sheet of plastic wrap, like a big rectangle, just a bit wider than the blackberry butter log. I spread fresh rosemary all over the cheese layer, then placed the blackberry butter in the center, rolling in up again. The stunning purple color is completely enveloped by the white cheesy duo. Once chilled, this is rolled in toasted almonds. This is served with homemade sweet parmesan-almond crackers.
As to the crackers, I actually just modified my hazelnut cracker recipe. I substituted almond flour for the hazelnut flour and added some sweetener. The interesting part is, normally, this cracker is SUPER crispity and crunchity, but somehow the sweetener blocked the cheese from forming long crunchy strands of crispy cheese. The end result was still delicious and a perfect match for the cheesy butter log, but the texture is more like a thin biscuit, than a cracker.
At the end of the photo shoot, I had people over. I gave away 2/3rds of the log (largely ‘cause how much butter can one man really eat?!), but I handed over none of the crackers. Oh, I’m so greedy!
To form the initial butter log, follow the steps in this video: