Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Ricotta Cavatelli


I'm mildly obsessed with all kinds of dumplings. Whether they are the kind of dumplings that feature a filling enveloped in a tender wrapper, or simply small nuggets of poached dough finished with sauce.

One of my favorite cookbooks is Pasta by Hand by Jenn Louis. If you are a fan of gnocchi, this book is definitely for you. It expands upon the typical gnocchi styles one might consider the norm (potato, ricotta, etc), and really extends to so many other hand-shaped pasta variations.

I've tried several recipes from the book, and have enjoyed them all tremendously. I'm a huge fan of the ricotta cavatelli for its simplicity and versatility. It can be served with just about any sauce, it's a bit less delicate than some of its softer counterparts, and it boasts a slightly chewy, al dente texture that is a big plus.

This recipe makes a lot of cavatelli. Portion sizes for gnocchi are a bit smaller than you'd anticipate because they can be quite filling, but use your own preference in doling it out to your friends and family. I feel the intended serving size of 8 for the recipe is pretty fair, but you could spread it out a bit more heartily and serve 6 instead.

When I first made this ricotta cavatelli, I cooked half of it and served it with a homemade braised rabbit ragu and arugula. This was a very rich and filling way to serve it. It would probably be more appropriate for cooler months, but we still enjoyed it regardless.

I froze the rest of the cavatelli, and then cooked off individual portions periodically. Most recently, I had some leftover puttanesca sauce made with pureed tomatoes, anchovy, chili flakes, capers, onions, garlic, and kalamata olives. I quickly boiled the last couple portions of ricotta cavatelli from the freezer and finished them in this sauce. It was beautiful and delectable. Another hit!

You really can't go wrong with this cavatelli recipe. I just finished up the last of my freezer stash, but I will definitely make more in the future.

Ricotta Cavatelli
Serves 8
(From Pasta by Hand)

500 g (3 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon kosher salt
480 g (2 cups) whole-milk ricotta cheese, homemade or store-bought
55 g (1/4 cup) whole milk
1 egg
Sauce of your choice

In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment, combine the flour, salt, ricotta, milk, and egg. Knead with your hands or on medium speed for 10 minutes, until fully combined and the dough is mostly smooth. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and dust with flour. Cut off a chunk of dough about the width of two fingers and leave the rest covered with plastic wrap. On a lightly floured work surface, use your hands to roll the chunk into a log about 1/2 in (12 mm) in diameter. Do not incorporate too much more flour into the dough, adding just enough so the dough does not stick to the surface. Cut the log into 1/2- to 1-in (12-mm to 2.5-cm) pieces. With the side of your thumb, gently push each piece against a gnocchi board or the back of the tines of a fork, rolling and flicking the dough to make a curled shape with an indentation on one side and a ridged surface on the other. Put the cavatelli on the prepared baking sheets and shape the remaining dough. Make sure that the cavatelli don't touch or they will stick together.

(To store, refrigerate on the baking sheets, covered with plastic wrap, for up to 2 days, or freeze on the baking sheets and transfer to an airtight container. Use within 1 month. Do not thaw before cooking.)

Bring a large pot filled with generously salted water to a simmer over medium-high heat. Add the cavatelli and simmer until they float to the surface, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove immediately with a slotted spoon and finish with your choice of sauce. Serve right away.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Pure Food: Panzanella Salad


In this day and age, there are more and more issues coming to light concerning our diets. Every day, it seems, there are stories in the news about additives, pesticides, GMOs, and more that are causing detrimental affects on people's health. Food has become so processed, that the majority of people's diets consist of foods so far removed from their natural states.

On the flip side, more people are now becoming aware of these issues, and are making adjustments to the way they eat. They are stocking up on whole foods, and avoiding overly processed alternatives. While I do feel it can be very difficult to completely avoid processed foods, limiting them is at least a very good start in the right direction.

Kurt Beecher Dammeier, owner and founder of Beecher's Handmade Cheese in Seattle and New York City, has recently released a cookbook entitled Pure Food. Its prime focus is on replacing processed foods with real, pure, natural foods made with non-chemical ingredients. Reading food labels can be truly shocking, so cooking "pure food" is a wonderful solution to creating a healthier lifestyle.

Kurt write extensively about his own journey toward a "pure food" diet. The introductory chapters in the book are truly enlightening. Did you know, "about 70 percent of the calories we eat today come from highly processed foods, foods that didn't even exist before the twentieth century"? That's pretty scary.

The book continues on to share over 80 recipes, which are presented in a series of recipe threads starting with a main meal component, and then providing additional recipes to use that first dish to create additional dishes. For example, the Braised Beef Chuck Roast can be served as is, and then leftovers can be utilized to make either Beef and Mushroom Lasagna or Three-Alarm Beef Chili.

Photo courtesy of BenBella Books

There are definitely pros and cons to this. On the one hand, I love that you can make one dish, and then extend it to make other dishes, making your leftovers way more interesting. Oh the other hand, that Beef and Mushroom Lasagna looks FANTASTIC, but there are essentially six other recipes you would need to make to put it together: Beecher's Flagship Cheese Sauce, Roasted Mushrooms, Roasted Onions, the Braised Beef Chuck Roast, and Spicy Oven-Dried Tomato Sauce (which starts with yet another recipe for Oven-Dried Tomatoes--see recipe below).

Don't get me wrong. I'm all about making food from scratch, but this is just something to be aware of. These aren't necessarily quick and easy meals, but that's not expected when you are cooking "pure foods" from scratch. I still plan to make that lasagna one of these days, so it certainly won't stop me!

Oven-Dried Tomatoes

With that said, there are still lots of recipes in the book that are a bit more streamlined. To prove that I selected the Panzanella Salad to make. It's the perfect summer dish to utilize locally grown, in season, ripe and juicy tomatoes.

Photo courtesy of BenBella Books

I actually halved the entire recipe to yield 3 servings, but it was plenty as a side dish for 5 people! I also scaled down the Oven-Dried Tomatoes recipe below to yield what I needed for the Panzanella Salad (I actually used my toaster oven set to very low so I wouldn't have to heat my large oven for so many hours on a hot summer day!), and used Dijon mustard instead of grainy mustard because that's what I had. The only other change I made was omitting the cheese because my mom isn't a fan of cooked cheese (don't ask).

Before tossing with the dressing

This panzanella salad is delicious! It tastes like chopped up bruschetta, one of my favorite Italian appetizers. We actually enjoyed this salad served alongside grilled steak, just as the book suggests, and it really is a perfect compliment. The olive bread I purchased was a little weak on the olives, so I'd look to source a better quality olive bread next time (or make it myself if I plan ahead), but I really love the uniqueness of this panzanella. I've never seen it made with olive bread, and I've never seen it made using a dressing featuring homemade oven-dried tomatoes!

If you would like to learn more about improving your diet by cutting out processed foods and focusing more on "pure foods," then this is a great book to not only educate you on the reality in which we are now living, but to also provide great recipes to get you started in the right direction. I do have plans to make more dishes from the book, namely that utterly fabulous looking Beef and Mushroom Lasagna. I'm thinking it will taste especially perfect this fall when the weather starts to cool down. Comfort food galore!

Panzanella Salad
Serves 6
(From Pure Food)

This salad is great alongside grilled steak during tomato season. The dressing gets its complex tomato flavor from Oven-Dried Tomatoes, which have a heightened sweetness and depth of flavor compared to raw ones. I usually like to use heirloom tomatoes of various colors for this salad, but feel free to get creative with any variety at the peak of its season.

2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 teaspoons dried Italian herb blend
2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 loaf olive bread, sliced into 1-inch cubes (about 1 pound)
1 1/2 ounces Beecher’s Smoked Flagship cheese, grated (about 1/3 cup) (cheddar would be an acceptable substitute)
3 ounces Oven-Dried Tomatoes (about 1/3 cup) (see recipe below)
1/3 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup seasoned rice vinegar
1 teaspoon grainy mustard
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano leaves
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco
3 1/2 pounds tomatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 cups torn basil leaves (1 large bunch)
1/2 cup thinly shaved sweet onion (about 1/2 onion)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix 1/3 cup of the oil, Italian herbs, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and pepper. Add the bread and sprinkle the cheese over the bread. Toss the mixture until evenly coated. Spread the bread mixture evenly on a baking sheet and bake until dried on the outside but a little soft in the center, about 15 minutes.

To a medium bowl, add the remaining 1/3 cup oil, Oven-Dried Tomatoes, balsamic and rice vinegars, mustard, oregano, Tabasco, and the remaining salt. Using an immersion blender or a food processor, either blend or process the mixture until smooth.

In a large bowl, toss together the cubed tomatoes, basil, and onion with the bread cubes and dressing until well combined. Let rest for 10 minutes and then re-toss before serving.

Oven-Dried Tomatoes
Makes about 1 1/3 pounds
(From Pure Food)

Long, slow oven drying concentrates tomatoes into sweeter and more flavorful versions of themselves. Their texture is softer than that of a sun-dried tomato, but meatier than a raw or stewed tomato. This versatile ingredient can be served alongside eggs, on salads, or on sandwiches. Chop and add them to potato or pasta salad, or simply toss them into hot pasta with kalamata olives and fresh herbs. These tomatoes are also an integral component in my Spicy Oven-Dried Tomato Sauce and pair nicely with Farro Cakes with Bacon and Parsley. I prefer using Roma (aka plum) tomatoes, but practically any tomato will do. Cherry or grape varieties make for a tarter, lighter variation, but be sure to scale the cooking time down to account for their smaller size and faster drying time.

3 pounds (12 to 15) plum tomatoes, cut crosswise into 3 round pieces
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for storing (4 to 16 tablespoons)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Evenly distribute the tomatoes in one layer, cut side up, on the baking sheet. (You may need more than one baking sheet.) Drizzle 4 teaspoons of the olive oil and sprinkle salt over the cut surfaces of the tomatoes.

Roast in the oven until the tomatoes shrink by half, 4 to 6 hours. Remove from the oven and either serve immediately or set aside to cool.

To store, put the cooled tomatoes in an airtight container with enough olive oil to cover. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. Return to room temperature before serving.

Pro Tip: Use the tomato-enriched storing oil as a finishing oil or base for salad dressing.

*Disclaimer* I received no compensation to write this review other than a free copy of the book. My opinions are always my own.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Camille's Macaroni and Cheese


This is my friend Camille's famous macaroni and cheese recipe. It's the same recipe her mom makes, and I remember loving this macaroni and cheese when I was a young teenager. I still love it after all these years.

It's a very classic American macaroni and cheese, and even utilizes American cheese. Camille stresses that the best (and only) way to make this is with Land o'Lakes American cheese, and that it just isn't the same with any other cheese. I've actually never made this myself (I just ask Camille to make it for me, ha!), so all the measurements and notes below are from her.

She bakes her's covered, and then uncovers it toward the end to brown. I typically bake my macaroni and cheese uncovered, but feel free to try it out either way.

Thanks Camille for allowing me to share your fabulous baked macaroni and cheese recipe!

*Update 7/23/19* I recently made this recipe myself (prior to this I had simply shared Camille's recipe) and it turned out perfect! This is seriously the creamiest and cheesiest macaroni and cheese. Definitely one of my all-time favorites. I'm sharing a couple new photos below from when I recently made it as a side dish for smoked ribs. I made a half recipe since it was a side dish and not a main dish, and it was still fabulous. It just baked a little shorter than the full recipe would (30 minutes covered, 15 minutes uncovered).

Camille's Macaroni and Cheese
Makes 6 to 8 servings

1 pound short pasta, such as cavatappi or elbows (Camille prefers Barilla cavatappi/cellantani)
2 ounces (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups milk
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 pounds Land o'Lakes American cheese, shredded (it has to be Land o'Lakes--we've tried it with other cheeses and it just isn't the same)

1/2 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed
1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons melted butter

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large pot and add the onions. Saute until the onions are softened, and then add in the flour, stirring constantly.

When the flour mixture starts to bubble, slowly stir in the milk, salt, and pepper. Keep stirring over medium-high heat, and once the milk has warmed up a bit (it should be warm to the touch but not anywhere close to boiling) add in the shredded American cheese.

Stir until creamy. You shouldn't see any strings of cheese left in the mixture. Lower the heat and continue stirring constantly, or else it will stick to the bottom of the pan.

When the pasta water comes to a boil, salt it and add the pasta, cooking until almost al dente. Do not overcook the pasta because it will get mushy once it bakes. Remove the cheese mixture from the heat, and then strain the pasta in a colander.

Add the strained pasta to the cheese mixture and combine until well mixed. Pour the pasta and cheese sauce into a greased 13-by-9-inch baking dish.

Combine the crushed crackers and melted butter in a mixing bowl and then sprinkle over the top of the macaroni and cheese.

Bake covered for about 45 minutes. Uncover, then bake an additional 10 to 15 minutes until the crumb topping is golden brown and the edges are bubbly.

Let the macaroni and cheese cool for at least 10 to 15 minutes before serving to allow it to set.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Bacon-Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Goat Cheese


I have a tee-shirt that says "Bacon is Meat Candy." There's probably not other dish using bacon that really exemplifies that statement more than bacon-wrapped dates.

Imagine this: crispy salt bacon, wrapped around warm, sticky, sweet dates. Take that up a notch by adding a filling of tangy goat cheese. It's the perfect trifecta.

These bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese were hugely popular at my recent Olympic party. I've eaten similar dates at Spanish tapas recipes, so I figure it's fair game to represent Spain on the menu.

They are very easy to prepare, although it is nice to have a couple sets of hands use an assembly-line technique to make the process quicker. I've made these previously, simply baked in a baking pan (the higher sides help keep bacon splatter from making a mess in your oven).

This time, I set a small wire rack in my baking pan, to let the bacon drippings fall beneath, making for a less greasy final product.

I can't say enough about these tiny, sweet and savory morsels. They are perfect for any party. You can easily swap out the goat cheese for small slivers of Manchego, or try ricotta (I've done it with ricotta before and those were good as well, but definitely more mild in flavor).

I prepped and baked these bacon-wrapped dates slightly ahead of time, and then heated them back up (in the same pan) right before guests arrived. They were just as crispy and gooey as when they first emerged from the oven, making these a good choice for a make-ahead appetizer.

Bacon-Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Goat Cheese
Makes about 30 to 35

1 pound Medjool dates (about 33)
3 1/2 to 4 ounces goat cheese
About 11 slices bacon, cut crosswise into thirds (or about 16 slices cut crosswise in half if you want more bacon wrapped around each date)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a 13-by-9-inch baking pan with foil (for easy cleanup) and place a small rack into the pan.

Using a paring knife, cut open the dates along one side and remove the pits. Fill each date with a small scoop of goat cheese, close it back up, and then wrap with a piece of bacon, using a tooth pick to skewer and secure the bacon around the date.

Arrange the bacon-wrapped dates on top of the rack within the baking pan. This will allow the bacon drippings to settle beneath, and allow the bacon to crisp up without being too greasy.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until browned and crisp. You may also flip the bacon-wrapped dates over partway during cooking if you'd like to allow them to brown more evenly. Remove from the oven and cool for a few minutes before serving.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Shrimp Toast


One of the most popular items at my recent Olympic Opening Ceremonies party were these crispy shrimp toasts. I honestly don't know if these are even authentic Chinese, but they sure are delicious! They are also very easy to make, and cook quickly.

I was able to purchase some wild gulf shrimp on sale last week at Whole Foods. It's really preferable to use the best quality shrimp you can find. There is so much sketchy shrimp out there these days!

I also used good quality "Canadian White Bread" from Trader Joe's. It's firm enough to hold up against the shrimp paste, and won't get soggy as easily as some cheaper brands of white bread. It also gets beautiful crispy when fried up. Definite win!

We begin by making a simple shrimp paste in the food processor. Peeled and deveined shrimp is combined with aromatic ingredients such as sesame oil, ginger, and garlic, and bound with an egg white and some cornstarch.

Do not fret. It will look like a very small quantity of shrimp paste, but a little goes a long way. Spread the shrimp mixture evenly over one side of the bread triangles. I used a small cheese spreader.

You can dip the shrimp toasts (shrimp-side down) in sesame seeds if you would like. It's not necessary, but I like the look of having half the shrimp toasts covered in seeds, and the other half naked.

These shrimp toasts are shallow fried in a bit of oil, and they cook super fast! They are best enjoyed immediately, but I actually arranged them on a rack in a baking sheet (so the bottoms stay crisp) to warm them back up in the oven right before the guests arrived, and they were still really good.

You can eat them plain, but a bit of sweet, tangy, and slightly spicy Thai sweet chili sauce is the perfect accompaniment.

Honestly, these shrimp toasts were so great, that I will definitely plan on making them for other upcoming gatherings. In the future I would even plan on doubling this recipe.

Shrimp Toast
Makes 12 triangles

8 ounces wild gulf shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 egg white
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
4 scallions, finely sliced
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon grated ginger
2 cloves garlic, finely minced/crushed
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
6 slices white sandwich bread, crusts removed, split into 12 triangles
1/2 cup sesame seeds (optional)
1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil, or as needed
Thai sweet chili sauce, for dipping

Combine shrimp, egg white, soy sauce, scallions, sesame oil, ginger, garlic, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped, but not pureed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. If you don't have a food processor, you can mince the shrimp with a knife and mix everything else together by hand in a bowl.

Spread mixture evenly over one side of each piece of bread, spreading all the way to the edge. Dip shrimp side into sesame seeds to coat, if desired (or you can make half with sesame seeds and half without for a nice contrast).

Pour oil into a heavy-bottom skillet and place over medium-high heat.

In batches, carefully place triangles shrimp-side down and fry until the bottom and edges are golden brown, about 2 minutes. Flip triangles over and fry for an additional 2 minutes. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate and repeat with the remaining toasts. Serve warm with Thai sweet chile sauce for dipping.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Pão de Queijo (Brazilian Cheese Bread)


They're finally here! The Olympics are here! I look forward to this every two years. Whether it's the winter or summer games, it's all good in my book. I just love the Patriotism of the Olympic games. I love cheering on my country, and seeing how all these incredibly talented athletes come together to compete.

For the past couple Olympic games, I have had a small group of friends over to watch the opening ceremonies and enjoy dishes I had cooked from a variety of countries. Last Friday, I had another intimate gathering to watch the opening ceremonies and nosh on international cuisine.

I wanted to decorate a bit more for this party than I had in the past. A couple summers ago I had purchased a red-and-white striped tablecloth which is quite Patriotic (minus the stars), but can also easily be used for other purposes since it's not a glaring American flag, but simply the stripes portion of the flag.

I downloaded some printable world flags, which I cut individually and hung on kitchen string across the dining room to make for a more festive environment. Although it includes 100 flags, they don't represent EVERY Olympic country, but it's still a really great free download that easily made my party way more festive than the ones in the past.

The name of each country's flag is written on the back!

I hung up a "Welcome Athletes" sign on the front door, and added a start and finish line just outside of the dining room.

I printed out tent cards for each of the dishes, with both the name of the county and an image of its flag, as well as the name of the dish, of course.

A few more international trinkets rounded out the decorations for the party, creating a bit of a worldly tablescape. I included a kangaroo figurine (actually from Australia) and a few collectibles from Hungary. I also featured an inflatable palm tree and a bunch of other souvenirs from my family's travels.

Coasters from Greece!

A posed a few Minnie Mouse dolls from my extensive collection (yup, I'm a 30+ adult who LOVES Disney and Minnie Mouse, don't judge me). They are decked out in Patriotic and international garb.

The food was set up like a buffet, and consisted of snacky items that were filling enough to satisfy even the hungriest athletes.

My menu for the Rio games is as follows:
Brazil: Pão de Queijo (Brazilian Cheese Bread)
Mexico: Guacamole
USA: Macaroni and Cheese
Japan: Beef Negimaki
China: Shrimp Toast
Spain: Bacon-Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Goat Cheese
Italy: Stromboli with Soppressata, Rapini, and Provolone
Germany: Black Forest Cupcakes
The guacamole, macaroni and cheese, beef negimaki, and Black Forest cupcakes were brought to the party by guests, and I made the remaining four dishes myself.

I served the guacamole in a beloved tiki bowl I acquired/purchased at Trader Sam's Grog Grotto on my recent trip to Walt Disney World. It's not Mexican, but I figure it adds another international element representing the South Pacific. Call it fusion cuisine!

Beef negimaki consists of thinly sliced beef rolled around a filling of scallions and cheese, heightened with teriyaki sauce, finished with sesame seeds and baked.

I've previously shared the Stromboli with Soppressata, Rapini, and Provolone--the recipe can be found here. It's seriously one of my favorites, and a perfect party dish to represent Italy at an Olympic-themed party.

The Black Forest cupcakes were a huge crowd favorite. They were baked by a good friend of mine who I met in culinary school. I studied culinary arts, and she was in the pastry program. Chocolate cupcakes are filled with homemade cherry pie filling and topped with freshly whipped cream, shaved chocolate, and chocolate-dipped cherries. Yum!

I will be sharing several of the other recipes over the coming weeks. Today, I'm starting with Brazil, the host country. I decided to make Pão de Queijo, or Brazilian cheese bread. They are very similar to French gougères or cheese puffs, but they're actually gluten-free because they are made with tapioca flour/starch.

The traditional cheese for Pão de Queijo is called minas, but is apparently impossible to find in the United States. Many say that Mexican Cotija is a suitable replacement for this purpose, but I have found that most recipes utilize Parmesan cheese, and in some cases a combination of cheeses. I decided to use both shredded mozzarella (for it's mild flavor and fantastic gooey texture) and Pecorino-Romano for it's sharpness.

The technique used for making the Pão de Queijo is very similar to pâte à choux, the dough used for gougères, éclairs, cream puffs, profiteroles, and more. Rather than piping this dough into perfect rounds, I found that most recipes simply suggest spooning mounds of dough onto the sheet pan, or using a small cookie/ice cream scoop to portion.

These Pão de Queijo were a lot easier to make than I expected. I was a little nervous making them for a party without ever having tried making them previously, but they were very successful. The exterior is crispy and golden, while the interior is chewy with a mild hint of cheese flavor (the amount of cheesiness is certainly dependent on the type of cheese used).

These were very popular, and although preferably served warm, they still retained their great texture and flavor at room temperature. They are truly easy enough to make even on a weeknight if you are looking for a special Brazilian snack while watching the Rio games.

Keep your eyes peeled over the next couple of weeks for more recipes from my Rio menu. Go USA!

Pão de Queijo (Brazilian Cheese Bread)
Makes about 20
(Adapted from Joe Pastry)

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 cups tapioca flour/starch (I used Bob's Red Mill brand)
2 large eggs
3 ounces finely grated cheese (I used a combination of mozzarella and Pecorino-Romano)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 

Combine water, milk, oil, and salt in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, put the tapioca starch in a medium bowl. In another bowl grate the cheese and whisk it together with the eggs. 

When the milk mixture comes to a boil, pour it over the starch and beat it vigorously with a wooden spoon until you have a cohesive, thick gelatinous paste. Let it cool completely. 

When cool, transfer it to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the cheese/egg mixture and beat on medium-high for about 90 seconds until the mixture is smooth. It will be very sticky and stretchy. Spoon roughly 2-tablespoon-sized quantities (I used a 1 1/2 tablespoon sized small cookie/ice cream scoop to portion) onto a parchment lined-sheet pan and bake 30 to 40 minutes until golden and puffed (if you are using two sheet pans, rotate them from front to back and top to bottom halfway through baking). Eat warm.


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