8 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 small garlic clove, quartered
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves
1 tablespoon chopped chives
Crackers or toasts (for serving)
Combine cream cheese, butter, garlic, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Add parsley and chives and pulse a few times until well combined. Pack mixture into a small bowl, ramekin, or glass jar. Cover and chill at least 30 minutes. Serve with crackers or toasts.
Cheese can be made 5 days ahead. Cover and chill.
Cooks’ Note To add a citrus note to the cheese, incorporate 1/8 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest with the herbs. Or add 1/8 teaspoon (or more) freshly ground black pepper for a little spice.
2 cups (5 to 6 ounces) crushed chocolate graham crackers
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 packages (1 pound total) cream cheese, at room temperature
2 teaspoons orange or lemon juice
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups (about 8 ounces) fresh or frozen cranberries
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh orange or lemon peel
Line a 9-inch square baking dish with a 14-inch-long piece of foil or parchment paper and grease the foil. In a medium bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs with the melted butter and 2 tablespoons sugar. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the baking dish. Freeze for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, 1/3 cup sugar, the orange juice and vanilla at medium speed until smooth, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the heavy cream and mix at low speed until blended, then beat at medium-high speed until thick and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Spoon the cream cheese mixture on top of the crumbs. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
In a saucepan, bring 1/2 cup water, the remaining 2/3 cup sugar and the cranberries to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring once or twice. Lower the heat and simmer until the cranberries begin to pop, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, transfer to a small bowl and stir in the orange peel. Refrigerate while the cheesecake is chilling.
Holding the ends of the foil, pull the cheesecake out of the pan. Cut into 9 squares. Spoon the cranberry sauce onto the cheesecake.