Cheesy puffed pastry straws were a popular snack when I was a kid, but we always bought them packaged. I admit, they did have an amazing crunch and crispiness that just is not as easily achieved at home as it is in the factory. However, home-made lends itself to a plethora of flavorings.
Here I simply flavored my straws with poppy seeds, and the other half with paprika. You could go garlic, chili, herb... the choices are as vast as your imagination. Parmesan is the cheese of choice here, not only because of its salty-savory qualities, but it also has the right melting characteristics needed for this operation.
These straws also make a great pairing to soup, btw. Feel free to use home made or store bought puff pastry.
225g puff pastry (half batch of this)
flour, for surface
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp poppy seeds
1/2 tsp paprika
Preheat oven to 425F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment.
On a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin, roll puff pastry into a 12-by-16-inch rectangle. With the long side facing you, lightly brush bottom half of rectangle with some of the beaten egg.
Sprinkle the grated Parmesan on top half.
Cut rectangle lengthwise in half.
Sprinkle poppy seeds on one half and paprika on the other.
Fold bottom half over top half. Gently roll dough to seal.
Cut each half lengthwise into eight strips.
Transfer strips to baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart.
Working with 1 strip at a time, hold each end with your fingers, and carefully twist strip in opposite directions, forming a spiral. Press ends of strips against parchment to prevent unraveling.
Freeze or refrigerate until strips are very firm and cold, about 15 minutes.
Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until straws are golden brown and cooked through, 12 to 14 minutes.
Transfer straws to wire racks, and let cool.
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