Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Cheese Straws

These are really good.

Don't believe me? Just ask this man -

I set about making these as a snack for him (I'm trying to get more calcium into him via cheese etc). I had these made before I would have even got the length of the shop.

When I first set out blogging food I used to think that I should only blog my own original recipes but I've since laid that notion to rest. First of all, I cook far too many other people's recipes and, secondly, I actually like reading other people's experiences and twists of 'celebrity's' recipes and so must assume others like reading mine.

Here's Debs recipe for Cheese Straws (adapted ever so slightly). She's not a celebrity but she does have some seriously good recipes.

Cheese Straws

1 1/2 cups (about 6 ounces) grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick or 2 ounces) unsalted butter, softened and cut into 4 pieces
3/4 cup flour, plus more for dusting
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon dbl cream (milk would probably work just as well)

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. In a food processor, combine the cheese, butter, flour, salt and red pepper in five 5-second pulses until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the half-and-half and process until the dough forms a ball, about 10 seconds.

3. On a lightly floured surface, using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough into an 8- by 10-inch rectangle that is 1/8-inch thick. With a sharp knife (or a pizza or pastry wheel; both worked great), cut the dough into thin 8-inch strips, each 1/4- to 1/3-inch wide (dipping the knife in flour after every few inches ensures a clean cut). Gently transfer the strips to an ungreased cookie sheet (though I lined mine with parchment), leaving at least 1/4-inch between them. The dough may sag or may break occasionally in the transfer, but don’t be concerned — just do your best. The straws can be any length, from 2 to 10 inches.

4. Bake the straws on the middle rack for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the ends are barely browned. Remove from the oven and set the cookie sheet on a rack to cool.

5. Serve at room temperature. (I stored some in an airtight container for eating over the next day or two and bunged the rest in the freezer.)

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