The last couple months of the year are also know as the puff pastry months of the year in my house, and in any house that has a lot of entertaining going on.
Pre-Made Puff Pastry
Puff pastry is a total secret weapon, making everyday foods look super special, and morphing itself into everything from appetizers, to tarts both savory and sweet, enveloping cheese for brie en croute, and beef for Beef Wellington. Pre-made puff pastry is probably the ultimate holiday entertaining hack.
Puff Pastry Cheese Straws
And it is the star of one of the most classic hors d’oeuvres out there, the cheese straw. It’s been a while since I made cheese straws, but they were one of the first things I made as a kid where I felt the power and the pleasure of making something that really impressed (and that… shhh… wasn’t really hard). When I picture my 8 year old self passing them at some party my parents were hosting, I can only hope that I wasn’t too eye-rollingly self-satisfied as I held up some little tray saying smugly, “Cheese straw?”
You can use Parmesan or Grana Padano, or really and dry hard grating cheese in these. A touch of sage or rosemary bumps up the flavor even a bit more. use whichever herb you like better or have on hand.
Refrigerated Puff Pastry Dough
Some puff pastries come frozen, and then you must be super organized and plan ahead when you want to use it in a recipe. BUT, our lovely friends at Wewalka understand the need for immediate gratification, and they have made a refrigerated puff pastry dough, that (like all of their wonderful doughs) comes rolled up on its own parchment paper. You unroll it, cut it to meet your needs, do what you will with it, and then bake it, right on its own parchment. In this case not only do you bake the cheese straws on the parchment, using it to fold the dough in half to encase the cheese filling is also a neat little helpful trick.
64 layers! No hydrogenated oils, or artificial anything added! And the convenience of not having to defrost anything. Plus it handles so easily—there’s no fancy footwork required on your part. Nice job, Wewalka.
Bacon Puff Pastry Twists
You can use any kind of packaged bacon to make these, or go for some high end bacon—either way you have the kind of nibble or appetizer that people stop talking to eat. Then they start talking again—often saying things like ”Oh my god and “these are insane.” Make sure the bacon thinly sliced, otherwise it won’t bake in the same amount of time as the puff pastry. I am also going to make these with prosciutto.
These are probably worth ruining your appetite for.Tweet This
I’m no math genius (though when you cook all day you can’t exactly be a math slouch either), but I do know that the power of bacon + cheese + puff pastry is not to be underestimated. If you bring these to a pot luck you will feel sorry for other people who brought appetizers. They didn’t have a chance really—whatever they brought was going to struggle for attention. Cheese puff pastry straws are just going to win every time.
Other Savory Puff Pastry Recipes:
- Smoked Salmon and Crème Fraiche Puff Pastry Tartlets
- Puff Pastry Breakfast Tarts with Spinach, Egg and Cheese
- Puff Pastry Croutons
- Green Salad with Pears, Parmesan and Pomegranate Seeds and Puff Pastry Croutons
- Baked Brie En Croute with Raspberry Jam
I do love my Wewalka Puff Pastry.
Herbed Cheesy Puff Pastry Bacon Straws
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- In a small bowl combine the egg with the mustard and sage or rosemary and season with salt and pepper.
- Unroll the puff pastry onto its parchment on a rimmed baking sheet. Brush the egg mixture over the puff pastry all the way to the edges. Evenly dust half of the cheese over half of the puff pastry, on one side of the rectangle. Use the parchment to fold the side of the puff pastry without the cheese over the cheese dusted side so that the cheese is now inside the folded puff pastry, then peel off the top of the parchment and let it lay back on the baking sheet. Gently pinch the edges and press down lightly on the pastry to make it adhere to the cheese inside.
- Slice the puff pastry into 12 strips. Brush the top of the strips with the remaining egg wash and sprinkle over the remaining cheese. Gently press down so the cheese adheres.
- Place a piece of bacon on a flat surface, then place one of the strips on top of the bacon, allowing it to stretch very gently so that it is the same length as the piece of bacon. Twist the dough and bacon about 4 times to create a spiral, and place them onto the parchment on the baking sheet, leaving at least 1/2-inch between each straw.
- Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until the bacon is crisped and the puff pastry is golden brown and cooked through. Serve warm or at room temperature.
VariationCheddar Bacon Straw. Trade in the Parmesan for ½ cup finely grated good cheddar cheese.
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