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Recipe for Aunt Louie’s cheese balls

Aunt Louie’s cheese balls

Makes about 30

La Varenne cooking school founder Anne Willan, writes in her memoirs, “One Souffle at a Time,” that her Aunt Louie, who lived in the North of England not far from Willan’s family, was known for her cocktail parties, “powered by vicious gin martinis and sharp little cheese balls that exploded into crumbs if you tried to bite them.” Today, Willan, who lives in southern California with her husband, Mark Cherniavsky, always keeps them in her freezer.

1 1/4 cups flour

1 1/4 cups finely grated Parmesan

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

1/2 cup butter, melted, or more if needed

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1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a bowl, combine the flour, Parmesan, salt, pepper, and mustard. Stir in the butter until the mixture forms crumbs. With your hand, press the dough into balls about the size of small walnuts . If the mixture is dry and crumble, add more melted butter.

3. Arrange the balls on the baking sheet and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

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4. Set the oven at 375 degrees.

5. Bake the balls for 35 to 45 minutes or until golden. Test for doneness by cutting into a ball; it should not be doughy in the center. Transfer the balls to a rack to cool. Store in an airtight container up to 1 week. Adapted from “One Souffle at a Time”

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