Cayenne-Cheese Cocktail Cookies

February 15, 2009

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I use a lot of storebought cheese straws, cheese crackers, cheese biscuits, whatever you want to call them, in the gift baskets I sell. I’ve found that every hostess worth her salt also has a recipe for a homemade version of this tasty snack. Here is one of mine. I call this version “cookies” because they are soft, not crunchy. They are spicy, cheesy and extremely rich. Perhaps a little too rich. They taste great, but I’m bothered a bit by the way they sort of spread and crinkle around the edges. I think I’ll try using less butter next time. Any suggestions? If you have a recipe for these crowd pleasing cocktail bites, I’d love to hear it. I know there must be tons of them out there. My mom used to make a version with Rice Krispy cereal in them, but I seem to have lost that recipe.  

CAYENNE-CHEESE COCKTAIL COOKIES

Substitute sharp cheddar for the smoked, if you like. (If you’ve been following this blog you know that I am still trying to use up all that dang smoked cheddar!) Serve these warm from the oven, or cooled, with a sparkling white wine or my favorite, pink champagne.

INGREDIENTS

(Makes 25 to 30 cookies)

½ cup butter, softened

1 cup smoked cheddar cheese, shredded

1 cup all-purpose flour

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ to ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

25 to 30 pecan halves

DIRECTIONS

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until creamy. Add cheese and beat well. Combine flour, salt and cayenne; gradually add to cheese mixture, beating well.
  2. Shape dough into ½-inch balls and place on ungreased baking sheets. Press a pecan into each ball to flatten.
  3. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Cool 5 minutes, then serve warm, or transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.   

FIND A GIFT FOR EVERYONE ON YOUR LIST AT ELIZABETH W. GIFT BASKETS!  

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