Parmesan pepper crisps are a snap to put together and a real treat for guests at cocktail time.
These little wafers take very little time to put together. Just toss the parmesan, flour and lemon zest into a large bowl and stir together. With two forks or a pastry cutter, cut in the chilled unsalted butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Make a well in the center and add the lemon juice and the water. Combine with a fork to form a dough.
Place the dough onto a work surface and knead it into a ball. Keep a small amount of more water nearby. The dough tends to be on the dry side and really doesn’t want to become a dough ball. So you may need to work in more water to get the dough to cooperate and stay together. Form the dough into a 10″ – 11″ long log with squared off edges. Place the log on wax paper and put it in the fridge for at least an hour. It can actually stay refrigerated for up to two days.
Remove the dough from the fridge and cut 1/4″ thick slices. Place them on parchment paper on a baking sheet and bake in batches from 12 – 14 minutes until the crisps are golden. I’ve had different batches require different baking times. If they’re not golden after 12 minutes, add one minute at a time extra baking time. When they are golden, slide them onto a rack and let them cool. Here you can sprinkle on some additional coarse pepper to pack a little more punch. The crisps will keep for several days in an airtight container…if you don’t eat them all in one sitting.
Pair With Your Favorite Aperitif!
They’ll be gone in minutes!
Parmesan Pepper Crisps
Yield: Serves 6
Total Time: 40 minutes, including bake time
- 1 1/2 cups finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 heaping teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon coarsely-ground black pepper
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into dice
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons water (more if needed)
- In a bowl, stir together the Parmesan, flour, zest and pepper.
- With a pastry blender, blend in the butter bits until the mixture resembles coarse meal
- Make a well in the center and add the liquids, stirring with a fork until a ball forms
- Knead mixture on a work surface until it is combined--you may need to add more spoonfuls of water if mixture is too dry
- Form the mixture into a 10"-11" log with squared-off sides and wrap it in waxed paper
- Refrigerate the log for a least one hour or even up to two days''
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and cut the log into 1/4" slices
- Arrange the slices on baking sheets covered with parchment paper and bake for 12-14 minutes. until browned
- Cool the crisps on a rack and sprinkle with more cracked pepper if desired before serving.
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