These thin biscuits with a hint of cheese and herbs are usually associated with xmas, but I tend to make them all year round. Parmesan Stars make great little gifts or are simply a nice treat for yourself. You can also swap the parmesan for any flavoursome hard cheese like gruyere or make a mixed batch. They can be kept in an airtight container for up to 7 days.
- 125g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 100g unsalted butter, diced
- 1/4tsp mild chilli powder
- 100g parmesan, finely grated
- 1 tbsp milk
- a few pinches of dried oregano to decorate
1. Put the flour, butter and chilli powder in a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the cheese and pulse again to bring the dough together.
2. Shape into a flat disc, wrap in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for around 1 hour until it feels firm.
3. Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F / Gas Mark 4. Line 2 baking sheets with greaseproof baking paper and set aside.
4. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to around a 5mm thickness. Use a 5-6cm star-shaped cutter to stamp out the biscuits, then re-roll the trimmings to stamp out more.
5. Put the stars on the baking sheets, brush with milk and sprinkle with dried oregano. Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden. Leave to cool.
[Recipe from a 2010 edition of Marks & Spencer Christmas Food]