With summer come picnics, potlucks and barbeques, but for those of us who aren’t so handy in the kitchen, it can be a real conundrum trying to come up with a dish that’s simple to make yet tastes great.

If you’re stumped for summertime snack ideas, why not try your hand at this easy-to-make cheeseball recipeShaped like the Forest Spirit from Studio Ghibli’s Princess Mononoke, it not only looks delicious, but is sure to impress any Miyazaki or anime buffs in your circle of friends.

Culinary blogger Cayla, or pankobunny as she’s known online, has been making weekly instructional English and Japanese cooking videos for over two years. With more than 10,000 subscribers to her YouTube channel, she puts together cute and creative recipes like this easy peasy cheesy Forest Spirit cheese ball. The only catch is that it has to be made at least a day in advance. For the full recipe, check out the video below!

For those of you (like me) that hate having to pause and fast forward to each step you need, here’s a rundown of what you need and how to make it.



1/2 pound (277 grams) cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
pepper to taste
1 cup of pecans, finely chopped


1. Mix the cheese.

2. Add Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, pepper, two tablespoons of pecans, and mix well.


3. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap and spread out remaining chopped pecans on top of it.


4. Put the cheese mixture on top of the pecans and shape it into an oval.


5. Wrap it up and refrigerate overnight.

Mane and Markings


1.4 cups (140 grams) shredded white cheddar cheese
1.2 cups (115 grams) goat cheese, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon pepper
sliced almonds


1. Mix the cheese and add pepper.

2. Put 3/4 of the mixture onto a sheet of plastic wrap and shape it into an oval a little smaller than the body. Wrap it up.

3. Take another piece of saran wrap and wrap the remaining mixture into a long roll. Refrigerate both overnight.




1/4 pound (114 grams) cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup (50 grams) shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
pepper to taste
1/2 cup dried cranberries


1. Mix the cheese and add Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper.

2. Put it on a sheet of plastic wrap and shape it into the head. Wrap and refrigerate overnight.



1. Remove wrap from body, mane, and face and stack them together on a tray.


2. Use dried cranberries to fill in the face, almonds for the mane, and shape leftover roll of cheese into markings.


3. Use cut slices of white cheddar for the eyes, and cut nori for the eyes and dark markings.

4. Push pretzels into the back to make the antlers.

You’re all done! Serve with crackers and let the noms begin!

Looking for other cute, Ghibli-inspired recipes? Hop on over to pankobunny’s YouTube channel for more kawaii cooking. She makes a pretty mean Totoro cake, too!

Related: pankobunny blog, YouTube channel
Source: pankobunny, YouTube
Top image: Entropy, pankobunny (edited by RocketNews24)
Insert images: YouTube
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