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Cheese straws with pistachios

Cheese straws with salty pistachios

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Easy to make and utterly more-ish, these cheese straws are a go-to party appetiser when time is of the essence, or anytime you want a tempting snack to stand alongside cheese and crackers and olives. Pistachios make a fine addition here, adding a layer of crunch and nuttiness to the crisp cheesiness of the plain straw. That said, you can leave them out, or use salted almonds instead. Either way, these are going to go fast.

Ingredients

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  • Cheese straws with pistachios

  • 2 sheets of puff pastry, thawed
  • 200g of Grana Padano, grated (use a younger Grana Padano for this recipe, preferably aged between 9 and 16 months)
  • 100g of shelled pistachios, salted, roughly chopped
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Method

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1
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Line two baking sheets with parchment and set aside
2
Dust a work surface with a fistful of grated Grana Padano. Unroll one sheet of puff pastry on top of the cheese and scatter its surface with additional grated cheese. Using a rolling pin, roll the pastry out so that it becomes thinner and the cheese sticks to it
3
Next, fold the pastry in half and top its folded side with more grated cheese. Roll it out to its original thickness and then cut it into strips, about 2cm wide and 10–12cm long
4
Gently transfer each strips to one of the baking sheets, making sure to space them about 2.5cm apart (they’ll expand while baking). Scatter chopped pistachios all over each strip. Twist the ends of the pastry strip in opposite directions to create a sort of twirl (if some pistachios fall off in the process, press them back in)
5
Chill this first batch of straws. Repeat the same process with the second sheet of pastry
6
Once finished, place the second batch of straws in the fridge and move the first batch into the oven. Bake for 15 minutes, or until deeply golden and puffed. Remove from the oven and cool on a rack. Repeat with the second batch
7
Serve the straws as soon as they are cooled or within a few hours of baking. They work well with both beer and/or dry or sparkling white wine
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