Since my youngest daughter Kara lives in Mississippi, my love of Southern cooking has become even stronger. When my reader Deb Pennington sent an Alabama cookbook along with a great pile of other cookbooks, I knew right away it was time to try another Southern recipe. I have learned from Kara that Southerners love baking with pecans. In fact, I have never seen such huge, beautiful pecans than I have in the South. I have also learned on my travels to the South that cheese straws are very popular, both homemade and commercially prepared. In Deb’s Alabama cookbook I found a recipe for cheese wafers that taste like straws in a flat form, and each topped with a pecan half. Delicious!
Thank you, Deb for all these great books! They will definitely be enjoyed in the months to come, especially for holiday cooking and baking.
I love this cookbook from The American Cancer Society, Alabama Division. Recipes from each of Alabama’s 67 counties are included in the publication. Alabamians are proud of their tradition of good cooks and unique recipes. The recipes cover everything from tasty appetizers to delectable desserts. There are so many pie and cake recipes, coconut and lemon flavors abound; seafood recipes with crab and shrimp; lots of casseroles, and specialty game recipes. The recipes are timeless Southern classics. I love this book.
Here are the cheese wafers. The recipe makes over 100 wafers and I couldn’t fit them all in a photo!
- 1 pound extra sharp Cheddar Cheese
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon table salt
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Pecan halves (100 or a little more)
- Heat oven to 400 degrees. Have 2 large ungreased cookie sheets ready.
- In large bowl of electric mixer, beat cheese and butter until well mixed. Add flour, salt, and cayenne pepper. Mix well to form a stiff dough.
- Form into ½-inch balls. Place on cookie sheets (they will not spread much) and flatten slightly with a fork or bottom of a glass. Press a pecan half into each ball. You will have 100 or a few more wafers.
- Bake about 10-11 minutes until slightly golden. Remove from oven and let sit on cookie sheet for a minute or so before removing to wire rack to cool completely. Good served with white wine as an appetizer,
When the wafers cool, they are crispy and cheesy with a big bite of a pecan half that gets nice and toasted. Since there were so many, I packaged them up and put them in the freezer.
I hope they freeze well, because we never could have eaten them all! They taste especially good with a glass of white wine.
Aren’t they cute little morsels?
Now I have to tell you my story of making these wafers. On the day I made them was not a good day and I was trying to distract myself from my knee that I twisted earlier. It was also raining and dreary and I was tired. So tired in fact, that when I quickly glanced at the recipe that called for 1 pound of cheddar cheese and 1/2 cup butter, my tired eyes saw 1 pound of butter! I whipped up the butter slightly before adding the cheese (thank goodness) and thought it seemed like a huge amount of butter. I went back to the cookbook and realized what I had done. I scooped up the nice whipped pound of butter, placed in a container and into the refrigerator. I’ll be using that for weeks, or maybe will make some compound butters. I wonder if the Southern cooks are getting a kick out of this Yankee’s mistake!