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Magical Holiday Meals

Dec 17, 2016 02:32AM ● Published by Family Features

A holiday feast is made magical by the array of sides that create a symphony of flavors and textures worth celebrating. Cheese is always a crowd-pleaser, and these rich, creamy, cheesy sides can earn you high praise from friends and family.

Make your side dishes extra special by putting a twist on traditional mashed potatoes or serving up a fresh take on a decadent fondue. If you’re out to make a big impression, these croquettes feature a crispy outer crust surrounding a melty, cheesy center for a flavor explosion that lights up your taste buds.

The secret to each of these recipes is mild, mellow, nutty cheese. Best recognized as a classic wedge available in original and smoked flavors, Jarlsberg Brand Cheese has a mild, mellow, nutty flavor, and offers a naturally lactose and gluten free way to make culinary magic this holiday season.

Find more holiday-worthy recipes, and learn more about the rich, 60-year Norwegian heritage of Jarlsberg Cheese, at

Servings: 4

Tomato Sauce:

  • 10        ounces tomatoes
  • 1          clove garlic
  • 1/3       teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1          teaspoon sugar
  • 1          teaspoon curry
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste


  • 4          ounces Jarlsberg cheese
  • 4          ounces cured ham
  • 1          garlic clove
  • 2          tablespoons shallots
  • 2          tablespoons parsley
  • 10        gelatin leaves
  • 2          tablespoons butter
  • 3          tablespoons flour, plus extra for dredging
  • 3          cups milk
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 4          cups cooking oil
  • 2          eggs
  • 6          tablespoons breadcrumbs
  1. To prepare sauce, chop up tomatoes and finely chop garlic. In saucepan, mix tomatoes, garlic, cinnamon, sugar and curry, and allow to simmer about 1 hour. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
  2. To make croquettes, grate cheese, cut ham into small pieces and finely chop garlic, shallots and parsley. Soak gelatin leaves in cold water 5 minutes.
  3. In saucepan, combine butter, 3 tablespoons flour and milk and bring to boil to make thick, white sauce. Squeeze water from gelatin and melt into sauce. Stir until smooth then stir in cheese until melted. Add ham, shallots and parsley, and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Pour mixture into square tin to depth of about 1 inch. Smooth top and leave to cool. Cut into about 40 1-by-2-inch rectangular slices.
  5. Heat oil in shallow skillet. Meanwhile, beat eggs lightly until frothy. Coat croquettes in flour, dip into egg then coat with breadcrumbs. Repeat for double-coating and fry until golden.

Baked Mashed Potatoes
Servings: 7

  • 4          large baking potatoes
  • 1          cup shredded Jarlsberg cheese
  • 1          cup milk
  • 1          container sour cream
  • 1          cup butter
  • salt
  • fresh ground black pepper
  1. Heat oven to 350° F.
  2. Place potatoes in large pot of salted water and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until tender. Drain and transfer potatoes to flat bottom bowl and mash. Add cheese, milk, sour cream, butter, salt and pepper. Mash all ingredients with potatoes until smooth. Pour mixture into baking pan and cover with foil. Bake, 30 minutes, covered. Uncover potatoes during last 10 minutes to allow browning.

Cheese Fondue
Serves: 4

  • 16        ounces Jarlsberg cheese
  • 1          garlic clove
  • 2          cups white wine
  • 1          tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3          tablespoons flour
  • 1          tablespoon kirsch (optional)
  • 1/4       teaspoon white pepper
  • salt, to taste
  • nutmeg, to taste
  1. Grate cheese, or cut into small cubes.
  2. Rub inside of saucepan with garlic. Heat white wine and lemon juice on medium-low heat, but do not boil.
  3. Meanwhile, mix flour and cheese in bowl. Slowly add cheese while stirring in remaining ingredients. If fondue is too thin, add more cheese. If fondue is too hard, add more wine.
  4. Serve with crusty cubes of French or Italian bread, broccoli, cauliflowers, pepper strips, mushrooms, potatoes, asparagus spears or Granny Smith apple slices for dipping.

Variations: Substitute white wine with champagne, or add roasted garlic, fine herbs or bacon.

Jerusalem Artichokes Au Gratin
Servings: 4

  • 2          cups Jerusalem artichokes
  • 4          shallots
  • 2          garlic cloves
  • 1 1/3    cups creme fraiche
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • lemon juice, to taste
  • 1 1/3    cups grated Jarlsberg cheese
  • fresh herbs
  • fresh ground black pepper
  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Peel artichokes and cut into approximately 1/4-inch slices. Cut shallots into wedges and finely chop garlic. In bowl, combine artichokes, shallots and garlic with creme fraiche, and add salt, pepper and lemon juice, to taste.
  3. Spoon mixture into ovenproof dish and sprinkle grated cheese on top. Bake on center rack 30-40 minutes. Serve with fresh herbs and fresh ground black pepper.

Sponsored by Jarlsberg Cheese

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