Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Parmesan Cheese Bites

Makes 32 Bites

1 cup flour
2/3 cup parmesan
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/2 cup cold butter, cut up
2 tablespoons milk


Stir first three ingredients together well in a bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender until crumbly. Press mixture together with hands, working until it is blended and forms a smooth dough--this will take a few minutes.

Shape dough into 2 4" long logs. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill 8 hours, or place wrapped logs inside an airtight container and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in refrigerator.

Cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices, and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Brush with milk. Bake at 350 for 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Baked bites can also be frozen up to one month if desired.

These make the perfect reception food. I made them for my sister's bridal shower last weekend and they were a big hit and went perfectly with my chicken salad focaccia. My kids love to eat them as a snack and I like to keep the frozen logs in my freezer so that I can bake them up anytime we're running low on snack items, especially ones that can travel well in lunch boxes! I know the instructions say to thaw overnight, but I've sliced and baked them right from frozen and the time it takes me to cut them all gives them enough time to partially thaw and I'll bake them right from that state and they're still delicious! They may require an extra minute or two, but no biggie. These make good appetizers and are good for parties and even weddings.

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