David Malosh

Cheese and Poppy-Seed Straws

Makes 40


  • 1Preheat oven to 425°, with racks in center and upper third. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper, and set aside. Combine Parmesan and cayenne in a small bowl; in another small bowl, combine sesame and poppy seeds with the salt; set aside.
  • 2Lay puff pastry flat on a clean work surface. Cut pastry lengthwise in half to form two 5-inch wide rectangles. Brush each half with beaten egg. Sprinkle one rectangle with the cheese mixture and the other with the seed mixture. Using a pastry cutter or sharp paring knife, cut each rectangle crosswise into twenty 1/2-inch-wide strips.
  • 3Working one at a time, twist each strip into a spiral, and transfer to prepared baking sheet, 1inch apart. Using your thumb, press the ends of the strips down into the parchment to prevent unraveling during baking. Transfer to freezer until very firm, at least 20 minutes.
  • 4Place baking sheet in oven; bake until pastry is golden, 10 to 15 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Straws will keep up to 1 day stored in airtight containers at room temperature.


  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 4 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 6 tablespoons unhulled sesame seeds
  • 6 tablespoons poppy seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 17.3-ounce package frozen puffed pastry, thawed
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

Cook's Notes

To help the cheese straws hold their shape, make sure they are very cold before baking. The straws can be made through step three up to two weeks ahead; cover well with plastic wrap, and freeze. When ready to bake, transfer from the freezer to the oven without thawing.

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