Spicy Honey Rosemary Cheese Snacks

YIELD: 48 4-inch sticks

INGREDIENTS

4 ounces (about 2 cups) sharp Cheddar cheese shredded
¼ cup (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon hot sauce
¾ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup fresh rosemary finely chopped
½ teaspoon coarse salt
Glaze
¼ cup honey
1 teaspoon hot sauce hot sauce
coarse salt to taste

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 325°F. Line two sheet pans with baking parchment.

Place the cheese, butter, honey and hot sauce in a food processor and pulse to blend. Add the flour, rosemary and salt and pulse repeatedly until mixture clumps and forms a ball when pinched between fingertips.

Remove the food processor blade. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and press into a ½ inch thick circle. Divide the circle in quarters. Cut each quarter into 4 even pieces. Gently roll each piece into a 12- inch long pencil thin rope. Cut into 4-inch lengths and place on the prepared baking sheets at 1 inch intervals.

To create the glaze: Combine honey and hot sauce in a small saucepan and warm over low heat, stirring until very thin-about 5 to 10 seconds. With a small brush lightly brush each stick with the honey.

Bake until lightly browned on the bottom, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and with two small spatulas carefully turn each stick over. Bake 2 to 5 minutes longer or until nicely browned. Remove the pans from the oven. Sprinkle the sticks lightly with coarse salt. Cool completely before removing from the sheet pans.

Arrange on a plate and cover lightly with a dish towel. If tightly covered the sticks will lose their crispness. Alternately, wrap the sticks in baking parchment.

TIP: Try a clover or orange blossom honey varietal with this recipe.

Recipe courtesy of Marie Simmons, cookbook author.