All-Time Favorite: Classic Cheese Straws

Pair cherry preserves-filled Blue Cheese Thumbprints with a glass of sparkling white wine for a sweet and savory appetizer. photography William Dickey / styling Lisa Powell Bailey / food styling Marian Cairns

Sample each variety of these bite-size treats.

Cheese straws are like deviled eggs--every Southern cook wants to make great ones. Here we’ve pulled together a couple of our all-time favorites, which can be served as appetizers, picnic snacks, or simple afternoon pick-me-ups. We’ve updated this classic by incorporating different types of cheese, ground spices, and nuts. These recipes pair well with soups or salads, whether you prefer wafers cut into round or square slices or you choose to put the dough through a cookie press to make the traditional straws. They can also go solo with a glass of Champagne or beer. No matter the shape, that’s an idea worth toasting.


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Our Best Cheese Straw Tips

Cheese Straws 101
Follow these simple instructions to prepare Cheddar Cheese Straws. You can find cookie presses online or in retail stores where quality kitchen equipment is sold.

  1. Load the dough into the canister of a cookie press until it’s about three-fourths full, being careful not to overfill. (Don’t chill the dough--it may be too stiff to go through the press.) Attach the desired disk (star, bar, etc.)
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Hold the press at a 45° angle to the baking sheet. Starting at one end of the baking sheet, turn the handle clockwise to push out dough, slowly pulling the press back toward you and continuing to turn the handle. Make rows until the baking sheet is full. (Tip: Parchment paper is available at large supermarkets on the same aisle as plastic wrap and aluminum foil.)
  3. With a knife, cut dough crosswise at 2-inch intervals to make individual cheese straws. (You don’t need to separate them.) Trim ragged edges, if desired.

"Taste of the South: Cheese Straws" is from the March 2006 issue of Southern Living.


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