Ugly Cheese Straws – They’re Not Pretty But They’re Tasty
A while ago I posted about some little pies that Boo and I made using ready rolled puff pastry. There were lots of off cuts from the pastry and I HATE waste so we made these dinky little cheese straws. My idea was that they would be lovely neat little bites. But Boo had other ideas. However, don’t let their appearance fool you – these were buttery, crispy, cheesy and delicious. It’s a great way to use up puff pastry that may have had some of its puff beaten out of it.
Puff pastry works because of careful folding to create layers. Unfortunately, this means it is difficult to reuse if you have off-cuts. Re-rolling it can mean that you won’t get any puff. It will just be flat pastry. Or bumpy pastry. You are unlikely to get the wonderful puffy dome of pastry you were hoping for. Re-rolling can also make pastry tough. So I should just through it in the bin right? No! I hate waste. This recipe works fine with a bit more chew and a lack of puff isn’t the end of the world. The perfect way to use up left over puff pastry.
Puff pastry offcuts (as much as you have)
We gather together the offcuts with grated cheese. We added cheese until it seemed that no more would stick to the pastry with a little pressure. We brought it together in a ball with some pressure (but not too much rolling or squishing) then gently rolled it out. This is where our method changed from my plans. I had hoped to cut long straws that I could twist then cut into smaller bites. The toddler wanted to do the cutting. Sometimes, when you are cooking with toddlers you just have to go with it. Is it really worth the argument? What are you trying to achieve – perfect straws or a fun experience? I decided to let Boo do the cutting with her plastic knife. This led to jagged edges, inconsistent shapes and most definitely not straws. But she was happy and got to practise cutting safely.
We placed them on a couple of trays and baked at 180 degrees C for about 15 minutes. Wait until they have some good colour as this will help with the crispy crunch. They didn’t last very long – she wolfed them down with a glass of milk as soon as they were cool enough to eat.