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Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws Recipe

These Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws are a delightful snack that combines the sharpness of cheddar with the freshness of herbs. With a flaky texture and robust flavor, they make a great companion to your afternoon tea or a flavorful appetizer before dinner. A staple in southern cuisine, these cheese straws are sure to add a gourmet touch to your get-togethers.

Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws Recipe
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All the ingredients in this recipe are commonly found in most kitchens. However, make sure to choose an extra-sharp cheddar cheese for the best flavor. If you prefer milder cheese, feel free to substitute. Use fresh herbs for a better flavor profile, but dried herbs can be used if fresh isn't available.

Ingredients for Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

Cheddar cheese: A sharp and slightly tangy type of cheese that gives the straws their characteristic flavor.

All-purpose flour: Acts as the base of the dough and provides structure.

Kosher salt: Adds flavor and enhances the other ingredients.

Red pepper flakes: Adds a subtle heat to the straws. Adjust to taste.

Fresh herbs: Adds a refreshing and aromatic touch to the cheese straws. You can use herbs like rosemary, thyme, or parsley.

Unsalted butter: Adds richness and helps with the flaky texture of the straws.

Heavy cream: Brings the dough together and adds a creamy texture.

One reader, Chere Berrios says:

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These southern cheddar and herb cheese straws are a game-changer! The combination of sharp cheddar and fresh herbs creates a burst of flavor in every bite. The texture is perfectly crispy, and they are so addictive. I can't stop munching on them! Perfect for parties or as a savory snack. Highly recommend!

Chere Berrios

Techniques Required for Making Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

How to prepare the dough: Combine the cheese, flour, salt, red pepper flakes, and herbs in a food processor. Then, add the cold butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Finally, add the heavy cream and pulse until the dough starts to come together.

How to shape the dough: After preparing the dough, shape it into a rectangle about 1-inch high. Cut the rectangle in half, then roll each block of dough into an 8 x 10-inch rectangle about 1/8-inch thick. Use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to trim the edges and cut the dough into thin strips about 1/4-inch wide.

How to bake the cheese straws: Preheat the oven to 400°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the strips on the prepared baking sheets, leaving space between them. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly golden on top and a rich golden color on the bottom, rotating the pans midway through. Remove from the oven and let them cool on a rack before serving.

How to store the cheese straws: The cheese straws can be kept in a covered container for a few days. If freezing the dough, shape it into rectangles, wrap securely in plastic wrap, and place in a sealable bag. To freeze after baking, let the cheese straws cool completely and store in an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

How To Make Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

Munch on these creamy and buttery cheese straws, that are loaded with fresh herbs and red pepper flakes, for a more delightful snack!

Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes

Serves:

Ingredients

  • 8ozextra-sharp cheddar cheese,(2 packed cups), grated
  • cupall-purpose flour
  • 1tspkosher salt
  • 1tspred pepper flakes,crushed
  • tbspfresh herbs,roughly chopped
  • ½cupunsalted butter,cold
  • 6tbspheavy cream

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Set 2 oven racks in the center of the oven. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

  2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the cheese, flour, salt, red pepper flakes and herbs. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

  3. Cut the butter into ½-inch chunks and add to the flour/cheese mixture. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs, with some pea-size clumps of butter within. Add the heavy cream and pulse until the mixture starts to clump together into a mass.

  4. Lightly flour a work surface and dump the dough on top. Dust the top of the dough with flour and use your hands to shape into a rectangle about 1-inch high. Cut the rectangle in half.

  5. Dust the work surface with more flour and roll each block of dough into a 8×10-inch rectangle about ⅛-inch thick. Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, trim the edges straight without sacrificing too much dough, then cut the dough into thin strips about ¼-inch wide.

  6. Transfer the strips to the prepared baking sheets, leaving about a ¼-inch of space between them.

  7. Bake the straws for 10 to 12 minutes, or until lightly golden on top and a rich golden color on the bottom, rotating the pans from top to bottom and front to back midway through.

  8. Remove from the pans from the oven and set on a rack to cool. Carefully transfer the cheese straws to a plate.

  9. Serve and enjoy!

Nutrition

  • Calories: 51.01kcal
  • Fat: 3.74g
  • Saturated Fat: 2.25g
  • Trans Fat: 0.12g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 0.97g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.16g
  • Carbohydrates: 2.95g
  • Fiber: 0.22g
  • Sugar: 0.11g
  • Protein: 1.51g
  • Cholesterol: 10.88mg
  • Sodium: 34.99mg
  • Calcium: 35.16mg
  • Potassium: 29.82mg
  • Iron: 0.40mg
  • Vitamin A: 47.87µg
  • Vitamin C: 5.07mg

Technique Tip for Perfect Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

When making these cheese straws, it's important to keep your butter and heavy cream cold. This helps to create a flaky texture in the finished product. If your dough becomes too warm while you're working with it, don't hesitate to pop it back in the fridge for a few minutes to firm up. This will make it easier to handle and result in a better texture. Also, when rolling out your dough, try to apply even pressure to ensure uniform thickness. This will help your straws bake evenly, preventing some from being overcooked while others are still underdone.

Time-Saving Tips for Making Cheese Straws

Prep ahead: Grate the cheese and measure out the dry ingredients the night before. This will save time and make the assembly process smoother.

Chill the dough: After shaping the dough into rectangles, pop them in the freezer for 15-20 minutes. This will make it easier to slice and maintain the shape.

Use a pizza cutter: Instead of a knife, use a pizza cutter to quickly and evenly slice the dough into straws.

Double the batch: Since these cheese straws store well, consider making a double batch and freezing some for later. It's a time-saving treat for future occasions.

Bake in batches: While one batch is in the oven, prepare the next batch for baking. This way, you can maximize your time and have a continuous flow of freshly baked cheese straws.

Uniform shape: When rolling out the dough, aim for a consistent thickness to ensure even baking and a professional presentation.

Substitute Ingredients For Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws Recipe

  • grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese – Substitute with grated aged gouda: Aged gouda has a similar sharpness and nutty flavor that can work well in place of cheddar.

  • all-purpose flour – Substitute with gluten-free all-purpose flour: This can be used for a gluten-free option without compromising the texture of the straws.

  • kosher salt – Substitute with sea salt: Sea salt can provide a similar level of saltiness and enhance the overall flavor of the cheese straws.

  • crushed red pepper flakes – Substitute with smoked paprika: Smoked paprika can add a mild heat and smoky flavor to the straws, similar to red pepper flakes.

  • fresh herbs – Substitute with dried herbs: Dried herbs can be used as a substitute, but in smaller quantities, as they are more concentrated in flavor.

  • cold unsalted butter – Substitute with cold salted butter: If unsalted butter is not available, using salted butter and adjusting the added salt in the recipe can work as a substitute.

  • heavy cream – Substitute with whole milk: Whole milk can be used as a substitute for heavy cream to reduce the fat content while still providing richness to the dough.

Presentation Ideas for Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

  1. Elevate the cheese straws: Arrange the cheese straws in a delicate spiral pattern on a wooden board to create an elegant and visually appealing display.

  2. Incorporate garnishes: Add a touch of sophistication by garnishing the cheese straws with sprigs of fresh herbs and a sprinkle of finely grated parmesan cheese to enhance the overall presentation.

  3. Pair with artisanal accompaniments: Serve the cheese straws alongside a selection of artisanal crackers and a variety of fruit preserves to provide a harmonious balance of flavors and textures.

  4. Utilize elegant serving ware: Present the cheese straws on a marble serving platter or a silver tray to exude a sense of refinement and luxury.

  5. Create a visually appealing arrangement: Arrange the cheese straws in a crisscross pattern, alternating the direction of each piece, to create an eye-catching and artful presentation.

  6. Incorporate thematic elements: Embrace the Southern charm by incorporating vintage-inspired serving utensils or linen napkins with intricate embroidery to evoke a sense of nostalgia and tradition.

  7. Offer personalized portions: Present individual servings of the cheese straws in miniature baskets or ornate serving cups to provide a personalized and memorable dining experience for each guest.

Essential Tools for Making Cheese Straws

  • Food processor: A food processor is used to combine and blend ingredients quickly and efficiently. It's perfect for mixing the grated cheddar cheese, flour, salt, red pepper flakes, herbs, and butter to create a uniform dough for the cheese straws.

  • Baking sheets: Baking sheets are essential for lining the cheese straws and ensuring they cook evenly in the oven. They provide a flat, heat-conductive surface for the straws to bake on.

  • Parchment paper: Parchment paper is used to line the baking sheets, preventing the cheese straws from sticking and making cleanup easier.

  • Pizza cutter or sharp knife: A pizza cutter or sharp knife is used to cut the rolled-out dough into thin strips before baking. This helps create the classic straw shape for the cheese straws.

  • Rolling pin: A rolling pin is used to roll out the dough into a thin, even layer before cutting it into strips. It helps achieve the desired thickness for the cheese straws.

  • Work surface: A clean work surface, such as a countertop or large cutting board, is essential for rolling out the dough and shaping it into rectangles before cutting it into strips.

  • Sealable bag: A sealable bag is used for storing the dough in the freezer, keeping it fresh and preventing freezer burn.

  • Plastic wrap: Plastic wrap is used to wrap the dough securely before placing it in a sealable bag for freezing. It helps protect the dough from freezer burn and odors.

  • Airtight container: An airtight container is used for storing the baked cheese straws, keeping them fresh and preventing them from becoming stale.

Storing and Freezing Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

  • The cheese straws will keep well in a covered container for a few days at room temperature.
  • For longer storage, place the cheese straws in an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper or aluminum foil, and store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  • To freeze the dough:
    • Shape the dough into 2 rectangles, about 1 inch thick.
    • Wrap each rectangle securely in plastic wrap and place them in a sealable freezer bag.
    • Label the bag with the date and contents.
    • Freeze for up to 3 months.
    • When ready to bake, remove the dough from the freezer and thaw it until pliable, then proceed with the recipe.
  • To freeze the baked cheese straws:
    • Allow the cheese straws to cool completely.
    • Store them in an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
    • Label the container with the date and contents.
    • Freeze for up to 2 months.
    • Before serving, remove the desired amount of cheese straws from the container and let them come to room temperature.

How To Reheat Leftover Cheese Straws

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the leftover cheese straws on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 5-7 minutes, or until they are heated through and slightly crispy. Keep a close eye on them to prevent burning.

  • For a quicker method, you can use a toaster oven. Arrange the cheese straws on the toaster oven tray and heat for 2-3 minutes at 350°F (175°C). This method is ideal for small batches and ensures a crispy texture.

  • If you prefer a softer texture, wrap the cheese straws in aluminum foil and place them in a preheated 325°F (165°C) oven for 8-10 minutes. The foil will help retain moisture and prevent the straws from drying out.

  • For a quick and easy method, place the cheese straws on a microwave-safe plate and heat them in 15-second intervals until warm. Be careful not to overheat them, as they may become soggy or lose their texture.

  • If you have an air fryer, you can reheat the cheese straws at 350°F (175°C) for 2-3 minutes. This method will give you a crispy exterior while maintaining a soft interior.

  • For a unique twist, try reheating the cheese straws on a grill pan or outdoor grill. Brush them lightly with olive oil and grill over medium heat for 1-2 minutes on each side. This method will add a smoky flavor and create attractive grill marks.

Random Fact about Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

The Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws recipe is a delightful savory treat that combines the sharpness of cheddar cheese with the subtle flavors of fresh herbs. These crispy, flavorful snacks are perfect for entertaining or as a tasty accompaniment to soups and salads. The recipe's use of crushed red pepper flakes adds a hint of heat, elevating the overall flavor profile. Additionally, the heavy cream in the recipe contributes to the rich and indulgent texture of the cheese straws. Whether enjoyed fresh from the oven or stored for later, these cheese straws are a delectable addition to any gathering.

Is Making Cheese Straws at Home Cost-Effective?

This southern cheddar and herb cheese straws recipe is quite cost-effective for a household. The ingredients are simple and readily available, and the recipe yields a substantial amount of cheese straws. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people would be around $10-$15, making it an affordable yet delicious option. The rich flavors and versatility of this recipe make it a great addition to any gathering or meal. I would rate this recipe a solid 9 out of 10 for its affordability and delightful taste.

Are Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws Healthy or Unhealthy?

This southern cheddar and herb cheese straws recipe, while undeniably delicious, is not particularly healthy. The main ingredients – extra-sharp cheddar cheese, all-purpose flour, butter, and heavy cream – are all high in saturated fat and calories. The recipe also lacks any significant sources of fiber, vitamins, or minerals. Consuming these cheese straws in excess could contribute to weight gain and increased risk of heart disease.

To make this recipe healthier, consider the following modifications:

  • Substitute part of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour to increase fiber content
  • Reduce the amount of butter and replace some of it with a healthier fat like olive oil
  • Use low-fat cheddar cheese instead of full-fat to decrease the saturated fat content
  • Replace the heavy cream with a lower-fat alternative like milk or yogurt
  • Increase the amount of herbs used to add more flavor without additional calories
  • Serve the cheese straws as a small portion alongside a balanced meal rich in vegetables and lean proteins

Editor's Thoughts on This Savory Cheese Straw Recipe

The Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws recipe is a delightful blend of flavors and textures. The combination of extra-sharp cheddar, fresh herbs, and a hint of red pepper flakes creates a savory and aromatic experience. The method of incorporating the butter and heavy cream yields a tender and flaky texture, while the baking process results in a beautiful golden color and a satisfying crunch. These cheese straws are a perfect addition to any gathering or as a delightful snack. The recipe's freezer-friendly instructions also make it convenient for advance preparation. Overall, this recipe offers a delightful and versatile treat for any occasion.

Enhance Your Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Mashed Potatoes: Creamy garlic mashed potatoes with a hint of parmesan cheese and chives
Grilled Asparagus: Tender asparagus spears drizzled with a balsamic glaze and sprinkled with toasted almonds
Roasted Brussel Sprouts: Crispy brussel sprouts roasted with bacon and a maple dijon glaze
Fruit Salad: A refreshing mix of seasonal fruits tossed in a honey-lime dressing and garnished with fresh mint leaves

Alternative Recipes Similar to Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws

Crispy Baked Parmesan Zucchini Fries: These crispy zucchini fries are a healthier alternative to traditional fries, and they're so easy to make at home. The parmesan coating adds a delicious savory flavor that pairs perfectly with the zucchini's natural sweetness.
Savory Garlic and Herb Roasted Chicken: This roasted chicken is seasoned with a delicious blend of garlic and herbs, resulting in a flavorful and juicy main dish that's perfect for a family dinner or special occasion. The aroma of the herbs as it cooks will make your kitchen smell amazing!
Refreshing Watermelon Mint Salad: This refreshing salad is a perfect way to enjoy the sweetness of watermelon with a hint of mint. It's a light and healthy dish that's great for summer gatherings or as a side dish for a barbecue. The combination of flavors is simply delightful.

Suggested Main Courses and Desserts to Pair with Cheese Straws

Main Courses:
Chicken Alfredo: Indulge in a creamy and savory Chicken Alfredo, featuring tender chicken and al dente pasta smothered in a rich and velvety Alfredo sauce.
Beef Stroganoff: Savor the comforting flavors of Beef Stroganoff, a hearty dish of tender beef strips, earthy mushrooms, and onions in a luscious sour cream sauce, served over a bed of buttery egg noodles.
Desserts:
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a decadent and velvety smooth chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. This elegant dessert is perfect for special occasions or a luxurious treat after a meal.
Apple Crisp: Savor the warm and comforting flavors of baked apples, cinnamon, and a crunchy oat topping in this classic apple crisp. Serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a delightful contrast of temperatures and textures.

Why trust this Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws Recipe:

This southern cheddar and herb cheese straws recipe combines the rich flavors of extra-sharp cheddar, fresh herbs, and a hint of spice from crushed red pepper flakes. The use of high-quality ingredients such as extra-sharp cheddar and fresh herbs ensures a delicious and authentic Southern flavor. The detailed instructions and freezing options demonstrate the versatility and convenience of this recipe, catering to various preferences and occasions. With a perfect balance of savory and aromatic elements, this recipe promises to elevate any gathering or meal, earning the trust of users seeking a flavorful and reliable cheese straws recipe.

Share your thoughts on the Southern Cheddar and Herb Cheese Straws Recipe in the Baking and Desserts forum section. Join the discussion and let us know if you've tried making these savory treats!
FAQ:
Can I use different types of cheese for this recipe?
Yes, you can definitely experiment with different types of cheese to create unique flavor profiles. Try using a combination of cheddar and parmesan, or even a smoked gouda for a different twist.
Can I substitute the fresh herbs with dried herbs?
Absolutely, you can substitute fresh herbs with dried herbs. Just remember that dried herbs are more concentrated in flavor, so you’ll need to use less. Start with half the amount of dried herbs and adjust to taste.
Can I make the dough ahead of time and freeze it?
Yes, you can make the dough ahead of time and freeze it for up to 3 months. Just shape the dough into rectangles, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap, and place them in a sealable bag. When you’re ready to bake, simply thaw the dough until pliable and proceed with the recipe.
How long do the cheese straws stay fresh?
The cheese straws will keep well in a covered container for a few days. If you want to store them for longer, you can freeze the baked cheese straws. Let them cool completely, then store in an airtight container with parchment paper or aluminum foil separating the layers.
Can I adjust the level of spiciness in the cheese straws?
Absolutely, feel free to adjust the level of spiciness by increasing or decreasing the amount of crushed red pepper flakes. You can also omit the red pepper flakes altogether if you prefer a milder flavor.

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