Savory Cheese Cookies with Caraway and Sesame
These savory cheese cookies with caraway and sesame are known by all Romanians as the savory cookies that our grandmas used to make. As far as I can remember, my grandmother used lard in the cookies’ mixture and always sprinkled caraway seeds on top of them. I didn’t like caraway at all, so I used to pick all the caraway seeds and discard them, so I could enjoy the cheesy, delicious taste.
Well, a few years ago I decided I actually like caraway seeds, so I started adding them to the cheese cookies as well, just like my grandma did. I also replaced the lard with a good quality butter. Surely the most important step towards getting some delicious cheesy cookies that melt in your mouth is to use a very good quality butter with a high fat percentage.
The recipe for these cheese savory cookies has been adapted from Sanda Marin’s cookbook, which tells us to use cașcaval cheese or parmesan. I knew they go very well with Romanian telemea cheese, but I used cascaval cheese this time – it’s similar to the mozzarella we use for pizza, but it’s a bit saltier. I did not try to use parmesan, it seems to me that it has a very different texture from our Romanian cheeses, but you can try to use it if you have some.
If you don’t like caraway, use sesame or poppy seeds. I used sesame for half of the dough, and caraway for the other half. My favorites are by far the ones with sesame, but the ones with cumin always bring back memories from when I was a kid, so I make them with great joy as well.
These cheese cookies are usually shaped as sticks, but since I make them every year for Christmas, I use a Christmas tree shape. It’s already a tradition, I keep that little Christmas tree shape especially for these cheese savory cookies. If you want to shape them as sticks, use a knife, or, even better, a pizza slicer. From 400 grams of flour you’ll get a big bowl of cheese cookies. They’re so good that you won’t be able to stop eating them, especially when they’re a bit warm, directly from the oven. ?
400 g flour
250 g butter
250 shredded parmesan/mozzarella cheese
2 egg yolks
150 g sour cream
½ teaspoon salt
An egg yolk for brushing
Sesame, caraway seeds
- In a bowl, mix all the ingredients, except the extra egg yolk and the seeds.
- Put the dough in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
- On a working surface, spread a bit of flour, then spread the dough to a thickness of approximately 5 mm using a dough roller.
- With a Christmas tree shape, cut the cheese cookies. If you do not have this kind of shape, use a regular knife or pizza knife to make even straws.
- Brush the cheese cookies with the beaten egg yolk, then sprinkle over caraway and sesame.
- Put the cheese cookies in the preheated oven at 180 ° for about 15 minutes or until golden on top.
- Remove them from the oven and serve warm or cold.