Use it or Lose it: Cheese

We love cheese – we eat lots of it and lots of different types.  But there often seems to be a little dried out husk in the fridge or even several.  Parmesan and Pecorino are fine, I save the rinds and add them to soups and stews to give extra flavour. But there are so many other delicious cheeses in my life and in my fridge.

Jenga cheese straws

Jenga cheese straws

I originally made these cheese straws for No Plastic July but even as I was making them I realised they were a great way to use up those little hard ends of cheese.

Recipe is here but I have tweaked it as usual.

Cheese Straws

Ingredients

(Recipe says it makes 36 straws.  I got a lot more out of the recipe!)

  • 375g/13oz plain flour

  • 225g/8oz butter, diced

  • 150g/5½oz assorted grated hard cheese (cheddar, double gloucester, wensleydale, cheshire etc.)

  • 50g/1¾oz freshly grated parmesan cheese

  • pinch English Mustard powder

  • small pinch cayenne pepper/paprika

  • 2 free-range eggs, yolks only (beaten)

  • Ice cold water 4-5 tablespoons.

Method

This is essentially a pastry recipe and I am generally very bad at making pastry on account of having hot hands.  So I make all mine in a food processor and the results are always lovely.

Sift the flour and put in the food processor with the butter.  Whizz until it resembles bread crumbs.  If you don’t have a food processor then rub the butter into the flour until it resembles bread crumbs. If you run the mixture through your (clean) fingers for a bit you should be able to feel if the butter is evenly distributed. Add all the other ingredients except the water either to the food processor for a final blitz or just stir into the mixture.

Then add the ice cold water a little bit at a time stirring/blitzing until it comes together in a ball.

Put the ball in a bowl with a plate on top and put it in the fridge for at least 30 mins.

Pre-heat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas Mark 5.

Take the dough out of the fridge and roll out on a floured surface until it is the thickness of a £2 coin (maybe 1/4 inch if you are not British). Then cut into strips the desired length and width of your cheese straw and place on a baking tray with a sheet of greaseproof paper on it.

Brush a little milk on the tops of the straws and then bake for 10-15 mins until they are golden brown on top.

I apologise about the eggs yolks only instruction – I should definitely do a Use it or Lose it Egg Whites edition soon.  Throwing away eggs whites is a guilty secret of mine, I know I could make meringues but do far I haven’t.

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4 thoughts on “Use it or Lose it: Cheese

  1. Pingback: No Plastic Round Up | Westwick Dreaming

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