Spiced Cheddar Rounds
½ cup (4 oz. stick) unsalted butter
1 cup grated extra sharp cheddar cheese
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
¼ tsp. kosher salt
½ cup finely chopped parsley, ½ cup chopped nuts, sesame seeds, or dried Italian seasoning
In a food processor or in mixer, cream butter until softened and than add cheese, flour, cayenne pepper and salt. Process until combined, about 1 minute on medium speed.
Shape the dough into a 1 ½” wide x 12” long log. Roll the dough into the parsley, nuts, seeds or seasoning. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to bake.
Cut the log into ¼” thick slices, place flat side down on parchment or Silpat lined baking sheet. Bake in a 400o oven for 5-6 minutes, until lightly golden and crisp. Remove from oven, cool slightly and serve with a bowl of assorted olives and toasted nuts. Makes about 36 slices.
NOTE: Can be done days ahead, then frozen, wrapped in plastic wrap and foil until ready to slice and bake. Thaw the dough for 30 minutes before slicing.
Stuffed Olives In Pastry
25 medium green olives stuffed with pimento, garlic, almonds, or anchovies
1 sheet frozen puff pastry from a 17.3 oz. pkg. (Pepperidge Farm), thawed
1 egg mixed with 1 T. cream
¼ cup sesame seeds, poppy seeds, grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Have the olives drained and in a bowl.
Place pastry on work surface and cut into 5 x 5 strips to make 25 squares.
Place an olive in center of each square, roll the dough around olive and place seam side down on parchment or Silpat lined baking sheet. Brush tops with egg mixture and sprinkle on topping of choice. Bake on middle shelf of a preheated 425o oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly and serve with cocktails. Makes 25.
NOTE: Can be assembled earlier in day, refrigerate, then baked an hour or so before serving.