Pesto Sun-Dried Tomato Cheese Spread

    45 minutes

    Great for a Christmas party. Garnish this colourful cheese spread with toasted pine nuts and fresh basil and serve with crackers.

    45 people made this

    Serves: 52 

    • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
    • 60g basil leaves
    • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
    • 30g pine nuts
    • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 600g softened cream cheese
    • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
    • 155g semi sun-dried tomatoes
    • 90g tomato puree
    • 185g butter
    • salt and pepper to taste

    Preparation:45min  ›  Ready in:45min 

    1. Put the garlic, basil, lemon juice, pine nuts and olive oil in a processor and blend Add 1/3 of the cream cheese and all of the parmesan cheese. Pulse blend until smooth and then transfer the mixture to a bowl.
    2. Coarsely chop sun-dried tomatoes in the food processor. Mix in tomato puree and 1/3 cream cheese. Blend until smooth.
    3. Place remaining 1/3 cream cheese and butter in a bowl and using an electric mixer, beat until fluffy. Season with salt and pepper.
    4. Lightly grease a 1 1/2 litre baking dish. Line dish with cling wrap so that the wrap extends over sides of the dish.
    5. Evenly spread one third cream cheese and butter mixture in the prepared dish. Layer alternately with 1/2 the sun-dried tomato mixture, 1/2 cup cream cheese and butter mixture and 1/2 the basil mixture. Repeat layering, topping with remaining cream cheese and butter mixture. Cover and chill in the refrigerator 8 hours, or overnight.
    6. Carefully invert dish onto a platter and remove cling wrap to serve.

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    Reviews in English (37)


    Although I did not get to try this myself, everyone raved about it at my party. I served it with an assortment of crackers and people kept asking me for the recipe. It's a nice mix of flavors. To save time and energy, I didn't do multiple layers of each thing - I only did one of each, so there were 3 layers in total. I put the dip right onto a charger - white on bottom, red in the middle, green on top. It eliminated the need for the baking dish/plastic wrap thing, which sounded like it could have been a disaster. I also didn't have time to let it sit for a while before serving, but it certainly didn't deter my guests. This was gone by the end of the night. It looked nice too.  -  16 Dec 2005  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)


    Very tasty and lovely creation. I had to give this 4 *'s due to its richness. I had my qualms when reading the nearly pound and a half of cream cheese and over a third of a pound of butter. However, the reviews below won me over, and I made it per the instructions. It was indeed enjoyed by myself & my guests. However, it made so much for how much a person could actually eat of it. And I had 20 hungry people! I think a person could cut the amount of cream cheese/butter mixture in half and use light cream cheese to make this more of a snack food of which people could go back for more.  -  26 Dec 2005  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)


    I made this recipe for my Christmas Party - I followed the instructions exactly - it was a hit! Thanks for a great recipe.  -  18 Dec 2005  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)