I have a confession – I don’t actually eat cheese(!)… I know it’s shocking, but there it is, so making these biscuits was fine up until the point that you bake them, as they make your whole house smell that creamy cheesy smell, to which most people respond with: Mmmmmm 🙂 But for me it wasn’t quite so lovely! Haha! The things I do for Christmas gifts! I made these only because I thought they might go beautifully with the gorgeous onion marmalade I’d made! My cheese-loving friends (of which most seem to be!), all loved these biscuits on the taste trials I did in November, so I was glad that I have another three batches in the freezer ready for nearer to Christmas baking!
With my limited cheese knowledge, I went for strong English cheddar cheese only for one batch, but then made subsequent batches with half cheddar and half parmesan, both of which have been well received which is great, but I’m sure you can diversify on the cheese front to use your favourite cheese! I found this recipe on the UKTV Food channel courtesy of the fabulous Sophie Grigson:
100 g butter
100 g flour
100 g cheese
To dress suggested toppings are; fennel seeds, cayenne pepper, caraway seeds, poppy seeds, cumin seeds and paprika
1. Place the butter, cheese and flour into a food processor and whiz until the mixture forms a smooth dough.
2. Remove the dough from the processor and form it into a long log shape, with a diameter of about 5cm. Wrap the log up tightly in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
3. When you are ready to cook the biscuits, set the oven to 190°C/gas 5 and line two baking trays with baking parchment. Unwrap the log and cut it into thin slices. For thin, crispy biscuits, slice them as thinly as possible. Lay the biscuits on the baking trays.
4. Make an egg wash by mixing the egg yolk with one tablespoon of water. Brush the egg wash over the biscuits to glaze them. Top the biscuits with some fennel seeds and cayenne, or use any combination of caraway seeds, poppy seeds, cumin seeds, or paprika.
5. Bake for 4-5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the biscuits, until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool and store in an airtight tin.
Tip: Keep an eye on these as they will burn very quickly and seemed to be better when a slightly paler golden than you might expect!