Monday, August 28, 2006

Cheese Straws

This is a spicy and savory cheddar pastry based cookie.
It's a staple when people come over and stays quite nicely in an airtight container.

Combine the dry ingredients:
2 cups flour
2 cups grated cheddar
1/2 tsp salt
1 or 2 ground up scotch bonnet peppers (optional...but certainly gives these the kick they need)
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup of butter (2 sticks)

Cut butter into dry mixture, until it's the consistency of large peas.

In a separate bowl, combine the following:

3 egg yolks
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tbsp of cold water

Add the wet to the dry mixture, and gently mix.
Don't handle the dough too much, and don't kneed it.
Mix just until combined sprinking more water until the dough holds together.

Form a ball, and wrap in cling film and refrigerate for 1/2 hour.

Preheat oven to 375F.
Roll dough out into neat square, and cut into strips. I use a pizza cutter, but a knife works just as well. You can also cut into cookie shapes, but sometimes I just find that too tedious...and it requires handling the dough too much which makes it less flaky.

Place strips on ungreased cookie sheets or save yourself some washing and use parchment paper.
Bake at 375F for about 10 minutes or until the butter starts bubbing from the straws.
Turn the oven off, but leave the cheese straws in for another 10 minutes.
Cool on rack and store in airtight container.

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