Gardening

Mixed Olive Christmas Tree – How To Make A Cheese Olive Tree

By: Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

A Christmas tree made of cheese and a variety of colorful olives is definitely something you’ll want to try this holiday season. This unique olive tree appetizer is packed with flavor and so easy to make. Continue reading for tips on making an olive Christmas tree.

Olive Tree Appetizer

  • Begin with a Styrofoam cone measuring about 6 to 8 inches (15-20 cm.) in height. Wrap the cone securely with plastic wrap.
  • Spread a generous spoonful of room temperature cream cheese over the flat bottom of the cone, then place the cone on a serving tray or plate. Press the cone down lightly so secure it to the plate.
  • Spread cream cheese on the remainder of the cone, then chill it for about an hour (if you like, you can mix a small amount of chives, chopped parsley, onion powder, or garlic salt into the cream cheese).
  • While the Christmas tree is chilling, use a star-shaped canape cutter to cut cheddar or Colby cheese into small stars. For extra color, cut a few extra stars from red, green, and yellow bell peppers.
  • Break several toothpicks in half and use them to attach olives to the Christmas tree shape, starting at the bottom of the tree. Use a variety of interesting olives such as black, green, or kalamata olives. You can also use olives stuffed with pimentos, jalapenos, almonds, or onions. Using larger olives at the bottom will add stability to the olive tree appetizer. Leave several spaces between olives for cheese and pepper stars.
  • Attach a few sprigs or leaves of fresh rosemary between the olives, then top the cheese-olive tree with a cheese star. Cover the olive Christmas tree loosely with plastic and refrigerate up to eight hours.

Serve the Christmas olive tree appetizer with sliced salami and your favorite crackers. Sliced pears and apples also pair beautifully with a cheese-olive tree.

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