cheese straws

Southern Cheddar & Herb Cheese Straws

Crisp and flaky cheese straws specked with fresh herbs make a delicious and fun hors d’oeuvre.

Servings: About 55 Cheese Straws

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces (2 packed cups) grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off with knife, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Scant teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh herbs, such as rosemary and/or thyme
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Set two oven racks in the center of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the cheese, flour, salt, red pepper flakes and herbs. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  3. Cut the butter into 1/2-inch chunks and add to the flour/cheese mixture. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs, with some pea-size clumps of butter within. Add the heavy cream and pulse until the mixture starts to clump together into a mass.
  4. Lightly flour a work surface and dump the dough on top. Dust the top of the dough with flour and use your hands to shape into a rectangle about 1-inch high. Cut the rectangle in half.
  5. Dust the work surface with more flour and roll each block of dough into a 8 x 10-inch rectangle about 1/8-inch thick (turn the dough as you go and add more flour as necessary so it doesn't stick). Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, trim the edges straight without sacrificing too much dough, then cut the dough into thin strips about 1/4-inch wide. Transfer the strips to the prepared baking sheets, leaving about a 1/4-inch of space between them. Bake the straws for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly golden on top and a rich golden color on the bottom, rotating the pans from top to bottom and front to back midway through. Remove from the pans from the oven and set on a rack to cool. Carefully transfer the cheese straws to a plate and serve.
  6. Note: The cheese straws will keep well in a covered container for a few days.
  7. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The Dough can be Frozen for up to 3 Months: Shape the dough into 2 rectangles, about 1 inch thick, wrap each securely in plastic wrap, and place them in a sealable bag. When ready to bake, remove the dough from the freezer, thaw it until pliable, and then proceed with recipe. To Freeze After Baking: Let the cheese straws cool completely and store in an airtight container separating layers with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Before serving, remove them from the container and let them come to room temperature.

Nutrition Information

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  • Serving size: 1 cheese straw
  • Calories: 50
  • Fat: 4g
  • Saturated fat: 2g
  • Carbohydrates: 3g
  • Sugar: 0g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Protein: 1g
  • Sodium: 69mg
  • Cholesterol: 11mg