These gorgeous little cheese puffs are satisfyingly simple to make and great crowd-pleasers. Leave the yeast out if you prefer: it is there for flavour rather than to make the puffs rise.
These puffs are nicest straight out of the oven but the mixture can be piped onto trays a couple of hours ahead and covered loosely with clingfilm.
At least 50
- 200g plain flour
- 1 tsp dried yeast (optional)
- 100g butter
- 4 large eggs
- 140g mature Cheddar, grated
- 55g Parmesan, grated
- Preheat the oven to 210C/Gas 7.
- Mix the flour and yeast in a bowl.
- Put the butter in a pan with 250ml water and half a teaspoon of salt. Bring to the boil. Immediately tip the yeast and flour into the boiling liquid. Beat until smooth with a wooden spoon.
- Remove from the heat and place in a food mixer. Beat in the eggs one at a time and, when smooth, beat in the Cheddar and Parmesan. Don’t worry if the mixture still has little flecks of cheese in it.
- Line a baking sheet with non-stick parchment.
- Scrape the mixture into a large piping bag and pipe on little balls the size of a fifty pence piece, spaced at least their own width apart. No piping bag? Use two teaspoons to dollop the mixture on to the baking sheet.
- Bake in the oven for eight to 10 minutes, until well risen and golden brown.