We love these! They’re really fast and easy to prepare. Best part? They taste like junk food, but they’re made from real ingredients: butter, cheese, flour, chili pepper. How can you go wrong? I’ve made these several times to have with soup or soup shots. This time I used Smoked Cheddar and they were a big hit.
1 1/2 cups (about 6 ounces) grated Smoked Cheddar cheese (or any other sharp cheese)
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened and cut into 4 pieces
3/4 cup flour, plus more for dusting
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon half-and-half or milk
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. In a food processor, combine the cheese, butter, flour, salt and red pepper in short pulses until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the half-and-half and process until the dough forms a ball, about 10 seconds.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into an 8 – by 10-inch rectangle that is 1/8-inch thick. With a sharp knife (or a pizza cutter), cut the dough into thin 8-inch strips, each about 1/2″ wide. You may need to dip the knife in flour after every few inches to ensure a clean cut. Gently transfer the strips to a parchment paper lined cookie sheet, leaving at least 1/4-inch between them. The straws can be any length, from 2 to 10 inches.
4. Bake the straws for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the ends are barely browned. Remove from the oven and set the cookie sheet on a rack to cool.
5. Serve at room temperature. While it’s doubtful there will be any left over, they will keep in the refrigerator, in a sealed container, for two days.