These crowd-pleasing cheese straws are super easy to make and look stunning as part of a cocktail hour spread. Vary the cheeses and flavorings to create a different snack every time!
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These cheese straws will not only look stunning as part of your cocktail hour spread, but they will disappear in no time! Great news: they’re super easy to make and you can easily double or triple the recipe to make a bigger batch, if you’re serving them to a larger group. Simply bake them in batches watch them fly off the serving plate!
Cheese straws might look intricate to make, but they come together very quickly and easily. They’re a fun project to do with kids: don’t worry about crooked cheese straws! The rustic look of cheese straws is part of their charm. All you need to worry about is to pack as much flavor into the straws as you can, so if some of the flavorings remain on your working surface as you transfer the cheese straws to the baking sheets, make sure to pick up every last bit of it and sprinkle it over the straws before baking.
Helpful Tips for Making Cheese Straws
Use the best quality puff pastry you can afford: Since these cheese straws come together with so few ingredients, it’s important to select tasty ones to work with. I recommend using 100% butter puff pastry for the best flavor and the flakiest texture.
Play with different cheeses: Flavorful, hard, aged cheeses work best in cheese straws, but from there, you can use any cheese you like best. Gruyère and Comté are two classic French picks, but I often make cheese straws with Parmesan, because I always have that cheese on hand. You can also use aged Cheddar, Swiss, and so on.
Vary the flavorings: I love combining Gruyère or Comté cheeses with walnuts because the nuts enhance the naturally nutty notes delivered by the cheeses. If, for any reason, you can’t or don’t want to use nuts, you can use finely chopped, pitted olives, fresh or dried herbs, or seeds such as poppy or sesame seeds. Sprinkle a pinch of smoked paprika or cayenne pepper for a delightful flavor punch!
…Or keep it simple: If you’re short on time or ingredients and only have cheese on hand, no worries: You can also quite simply omit any additional flavorings and only use cheese as a garnish! The resulting snack will be every bit as addictive and delightful as it should be.
On a clean working surface, roll out the sheet of puff pastry. Gently press the puff pastry flat, keeping the wrapping paper at the back to prevent the pastry from sticking to your working surface.
Brush the pastry all over with the egg yolk. Sprinkle with the cheese and walnuts, then generously season with black pepper. Gently press the garnishes down onto the pastry.
Using a pizza wheel or a very sharp knife, slice the sheet into two rectangles, then slice each rectangle into thin ½-in (1 cm) strips. Gently pick up 1 strip and transfer it to the prepared baking sheet. As you set the strips down, twist the ends in opposite directions to tightly spiral the straws. Repeat to create all straws. Pick up the garnishes that have fallen off the straws during the process and carefully sprinkle them back over the twisted straws.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. The cheese straws are ready when they are puffed, deep golden brown, and dry to the touch.
Transfer the sheet to a rack and cool for 15 minutes.
SERVING: Serve the cheese straws cool or warm.
STORAGE: Cheese straws are best enjoyed the day they’re made, but you can store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. Warming up the straws in a 300°F (150°C) oven for 5 minutes will make them super crispy again.
CLEVER TIP: Don't want to or can't use nuts? You can substitute finely chopped, pitted olives, fresh or dried herbs, or seeds such as poppy or sesame seeds. Sprinkle a pinch of smoked paprika or cayenne pepper for a delightful flavor punch!
Did you make this?
Tell me how you liked it! Leave a comment or take a picture and tag it with @foodnouveau on Instagram.
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