Thanksgiving and Cheese Straws

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Today we are hosting our very first Thanksgiving in our new place. I’m not a traditionalist when it comes to this meal. Turkey never impresses me and since I am now in charge— I declared it a turkey-free Thanksgiving! Although this declaration was met with resistance (mostly from Bryan) I am confident that I will be able to convince everyone that we can still give thanks without killing a turkey (instead we will kill a cow). We’ll still have a really lovely meal, just minus the bird. I’ll tell you a little more about the feast once I have cooked it, but for now I wanted to share these delicious little cheese straws that will accompany cocktails and wine at the start of the meal.

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This recipe is from the incomparable Edna Lewis and really is such a great recipe to have in your cooking repertoire. Cheese straws are a popular appetizer in the south and I have always wondered why they didn’t make their way north. The best thing about these cheese straws is that they are actually better made in advance! What more could you ask for? They are elegant and addictive and the perfect snack as everyone waits around for the main event (it is 9am and I have already eaten 5 of them— help).

I have a meal to prepare so— Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope that it is delicious.

I will see you all back here on Tuesday, December 1st for the start of something very, very exciting. December is going to be crazy here at Lottie + Doof!

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Cheese Straws (by Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock)

  • 1 2/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more, to taste)
  • 1/2 pound extra-sharp Cheddar cheese, coarsely grated (2 1/2 cups)
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons water

Sift the flour, mustard, salt and cayenne into a medium bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat the cheese and butter on low speed until well blended. Gradually beat in the flour until completely incorporated. Add the water and beat for 1 minute.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead 5 times. On a large sheet of wax paper, roll the dough into a 12-by-9-inch rectangle. Slide the dough onto a cookie sheet and refrigerate until chilled, about 15 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 425°. Cut the dough in half crosswise, then cut it into 6-by- 1/4 -inch strips. Transfer the strips to 2 cookie sheets. Bake 1 sheet at a time for about 14 minutes, or until the cheese straws are golden brown and crisp. Let cool slightly, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

19 comments to “Thanksgiving and Cheese Straws”

  1. Happy thanksgiving, Tim! The cheese straws look so nice. love the plate too.

  2. Happy Thanksgiving! Cheese straws are really popular here in the UK. Yours look delicious! We’re doing our Thanksgiving tomorrow. Since there’s no day off here, it just seemed easier. Looking forward to December 1–very intrigued!

  3. Happy Thanksgiving…these look Fab!

  4. I’m dying to know what’s happening in December!! Can’t wait. Hope your turkey-free thanksgiving was awesome. I did the same this year. Happy Holidays!!

  5. jennifer morrison says:

    November 27th, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    Cheese straws look fabulous. I shall make them soon. I do feel sympathy for Bryan, though. No turkey must have been a shock. Glad you made him some pumpkin bread! Happy leftover day!

  6. The cheese straws look delicious. I’ve made a similar recipe before. I am a fellow food blogger in Chicago and love your site. Keep up the great posts>

  7. Happy Thanksgiving! Those are nice looking cheese straws! I want to make some right now! Thanks for sharing!

  8. Happy Thanksgiving, Tim! The cheese straws look and sound delish! I wish you lots of wonderful, happy memories in your new home! I must say, I made a turkey this year that just might make a believer out of you….. :)

  9. Cheese straws remind me of being a child – my Mum used to make them for us. What a great litte starter to make for festive get togethers!

  10. i would divorce you if you took away my turkey!

  11. Turkey-free is all good! It’s overrated. :) Pass the cheese…straws that is.

  12. Hi Tim – I hope you had a wonderful holiday. Haven’t stopped by you site in a few days, and I feel like I’ve been away for ages! Having fun catching up on your posts. The cheese & butter to flour ratio of these straws is so high, I’ll definitely have to save them for a special occasion. ;)

  13. This is my first time commenting even though I’ve been reading your blog for some time. I made the cheese straws last night for my book club. They were a huge hit!! Everyone loved them, thanks for sharing.

  14. Hi Jenn, Great- I am glad to hear you liked that recipe too. They are kind of addictive.

  15. Just made recipe from Gourmet 2002 and this one. My teen daughters laughed at my contribution to the holiday potluck. But eat them they did! One comment was “they taste like goldfish”. Admit it, goldfish are great. Used extra sharp white, added paprika instead of cayenne for the small fry. Added white pepper just bcs I like it.

  16. these really are addictive. seriously, dangerously addicitve.

  17. omg i’m making them again.

  18. My mother has made a variation of these since the 50′s. She uses a cookie press to shape them (not electric-50′s era manual).They are unique, pretty and always a hit. Love your blog. When I want something different, classy yet completely doable, I come here to see what you are cooking.

  19. Yum – these look so yummy! :) I’ll definitely be making these soon.

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