Hello, hello! With the holidays approaching appetizers are going to be a hot item. Some search the internet, some scour the Pinterest boards, while others are glued to their TV’s trying to catch as many recipes on the cooking shows as they can. Speaking of cooking channels, have you guys seen MASTERCHEF JUNIOR on FOX? Just in case you haven’t (here’s the link to the previous episodes), it’s a show where kids (shall I mention, super talented kids?) compete in a series of food challenges. Given my passion for cooking and baking, you bet my girls watch the cooking shows together with me, usually it’s followed by a request to make something together, like chocolate chip cookies, or… these Cheese & Basil Twists.
Anyway, a while ago I told my 7 year old that I could make Borsch at the age of 9 and she had a hard time believing me since she couldn’t imagine herself making something so “complicated”, in just 2 years. Well, watching kids cook on MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, my little skills as a 9 year old fade and look very, very bleak. Seriously, those kids can cook! I am not sure if they were being taught cooking skills since they were in diapers or how in the world they mastered such skills in such short amount of time, but you have got to see them! I do not envy the judges though. I can not imagine how you tell a kid that already brought so much talent and effort to the table that their dish does not cut it.
Kid’s cooking competitions, like MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, are new to the whole realm of cooking shows and I love how inspirational they’re to the kids. I guess when you see a kid making raspberry mousse from scratch, all of a sudden frying an egg or making a sandwich is not such a big deal. Being the oldest of 2, my daughter is very competitive and every time she watched the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, she goes and tries to make something in the kitchen herself. After watching the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR this past Friday, she asked to make breakfast, which included fried eggs and asparagus. She’s so proud of herself when I let her do something in the kitchen and it turns out well. I am proud of her too, you got to start them early you know 😉
Back to the appetizer now. You know how anything that includes cheese is always the first fly off the table? Well these Cheese and Basil Twists are going to do just that – fly off the table! They’re crispy, cheesy and delicious – great on their own or with hearty bowl of soup (I’m thinking Tomato Soup). Plus they’re something you can make with your kids, but in that case make sure to shred some extra cheese – because you know they’ll sneak pinches of it right into their mouths haha!
Cheese and Basil Puff Pastry Twists
Yield: 8 – 10” long puff puff pastry twists
1 puff pastry sheet, thawed
1 egg +1 Tbsp water, whisked together
2 oz cheddar cheese, about 3/4 cup shredded (I had white cheddar)
6-7 leaves basil
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp paprika
How to make Cheese and Basil Puff Pastry Twists Preheat oven to 425F with the rack in the middle. Shred the cheese.
Stack leaves one on top of the other, roll them together and cut into thin strips.
On a floured work surface roll out the thawed puff pastry sheet into 20” x 10”. Using a knife or a pizza cutter, cut into 8 even strips lengthwise.
Brush the strips of dough with the egg wash, sprinkle with cheese, cheddar and the garlic powder only on the lower half of the puff pastry strips.
Take the unsprinkled half of each strip and fold it over the sprinkled half, then firmly press together with hand to adhere the two sides together. Brush the egg yolk mixture on the strips again and sprinkle with half the paprika.
Twist and stretch each double-sided strip until you get a fully covered twist as shown on the picture.
Place all twists on a parchment lined baking sheet. Brush with the egg wash again. Sprinkle with paprika.
Bake in a preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until the twists are golden in color.
Transfer to a cooling rack and allow to come to room temperature before serving.
Hashtag your photos #LetTheBakingBeginBlog so I can see your creations and for a chance to be featured!
Check out MASTERCHEF JUNIOR on FOX website here and don’t miss an all-new season of MASTERCHEF JUNIOR Fridays at 8/7c on FOX!
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