Friday, April 30, 2010

Herbed Parmesan Crisps

I love these little parmesan crisps. They can be made any size or shape and make an excellent garnish for a salad or soup, either whole or broken up. They can also be shaped into a cup and used to hold a filling, like a salad such as spinach salad or eggplant salad. I like to add freshly ground black pepper and an herb, such as rosemary, to the cheese, but the crisps are also wonderful when made simply with freshly shredded parmigiano reggiano. Enjoy!

Herbed Parmesan Crisps
1/2 cup parmigiano reggiano, shredded
1 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 325.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or Silpat. It is recommended to use a Silpat to keep the cheese from sticking. Alternatively you could grease the parchment paper with butter but the cheese already has a lot of oil so it can be rather greasy. Place a tablespoon of cheese on the sheet. Use your fingers to spread and flatten the mound into a circle 2" in diameter. Repeat with remaining cheese, leaving a 2" space between each mound. Season with pepper and sprinkle rosemary on top. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until golden and crisp. Remove from oven. Carefully remove crisp with a spatula and transfer to a power towel. Let cool. Use as garnish in salad or soup. Makes about 8 crisps.

For parmesan cups
Preheat oven to 325. To make 6 cups requires 1.5 cups of grated parmesan. Place 1/4 cup mound of parmesan on the parchment or Silpat lined baking sheet and flatten until mound is flat and 4.5 to 5" in diameter. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until golden and crisp. Remove from oven. Quickly use a thin spatula to remove the warm cheese and drape over the bottom of a small cup or into the empty cup of an egg carton, gently pressing into shape. Let cool. Can fill with salad and serve as an appetizer.

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