Cheese Straws – Mary Berry’s Baking Bible

My teen boys are big fans of cheese twists and having got over my fear of pastry (thanks to the Hairy Bikers) I thought I’d try some cheese straws as I didn’t have any puff pastry to hand and didn’t have enough time to make puff pastry. I’ve been using Mary Berry’s Baking Biblea lot lately so it seemed the obvious recipe to start with. As I mixed together the dough I started to get an inkling why she might be so tiny. The quantity of dough hardly seemed worth bothering with! However I didn’t have enough spare butter to make more so in it went to the fridge. Actually mixing the dough was quick and easy and as long as you plan for the 1/2hr rest in the fridge these don’t take much time to make. I was surprised the butter went in soft. The finished cheese straws were nice but minute and rather crumbly. This would be a good recipe to use up egg yolks if you were making meringues, especially as Mary says they can be frozen (and even eaten straight from the freezer)

Ingredients

  • 100g (4oz) plain flour
  • 75g (3oz) softened butter
  • 50g (2oz) grated mature cheddar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • finely grated parmesan for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the over to 190 degrees C/Gas 5.
  2. Lightly grease 2 baking trays
  3. Measure the flour into a bowl and run in the butter with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the grated cheddar.
  4. Reserve a little of the egg yolk for glazing and stir in the remainder. Bring the mixture together to form a dough. Wrap in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  5. Roll the chilled dough out on to a lightly floured work surface to a thickness of about 5mm. Cut into neat strips about 5mm (I did 1 cm wide) wide and about 10cm long.
  6. Place on the prepared baking trays, brush with the remaining egg yolk and sprinkle generously with the grated parmesan.
  7. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 10-15 minutes or until golden. Lift off the baking trays (with great care) and leave to cool completely on a wire rack
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