4 Super Simple Festive Snacks

Ham & Cheese Christmas Trees 

 

Ingredients: 

 

1 roll puff pastry

125g ham

½ cup cream cheese

½ cup cheddar cheese, finely grated

9 olives (green)

9 skewers, soaked in water first to prevent burning

 

Yield: 9 Trees 

 

Method: 

 

1. Roll out puff pastry using a rolling pin and flour. The surface must be dusted with flour.

 

2. Top with a layer of cream cheese and grated cheddar cheese. 

 

3. Lightly pat down the cheese and top with ham slices, then slice into 9 or 10 strips lengthwise, roughly 2cm thick. 

 

4. Fold the strips of dough accordion style (to achieve a tree like effect) start with a small amount and widen as you go (until you reach the end).

 

5. Place a long skewer in the center starting at the base then through to the top of the tree. Place on a baking paper lined baking sheet.

 

6. Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.  While strips are in the fridge pre-heat oven to 180°C.

 

7. Remove from fridge and bake for +/- 15 minutes or until golden. 

 

8. Top each tree with a green olive or edible festive decorations of choice. 

 

9.    Serve & ENJOY!

 

Mini Cheese Ball Pretzel Bites 

 

Ingredients: 

 

For the cheese balls:

 

1 tub cream cheese, softened

½ cup Emmental cheese, grated 

¼ cup roughly chopped dried cranberries

¼ cup finely chopped pecans (or nuts of choice)

¼ cup thinly chopped chives

 

For the coating:

 

½ cup thinly sliced chives

½ cup finely chopped pecans

½ cup chopped dried cranberries

15 pretzel sticks

Fresh chives to garnish (as bows)

 

Method: 

 

1. Combine the ingredients in a large bowl to create the mixture for the cheese balls, stirring until combined.

 

2. Use an ice cream scoop to scoop out small balls.

 

3. Roll into a ball using your hands.

 

4. Place chives, pecans, and cranberries into a shallow bowl and mix to combine.

 

5. Roll the cheese balls in the coating mixture and spear with a pretzel stick.

 

6. Refrigerate until ready to serve. (If preparing more than 4 hours in advance, don't add the pretzel sticks until ready to serve.)

 

7. Tie fresh chives at the base of each pretzel to create a bow effect.

 

8. Serve & ENJOY!

 

Edible Phyllo Crackers

 

Ingredients: 

 

1 tbsp olive oil

½ onion, peeled and finely chopped

1 small garlic clove, finely chopped

1 ½ cups mushrooms, roughly chopped

400g baby spinach 

6 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only

½ cup feta, crumbled

12 sheets of phyllo pastry

40g butter, melted, for brushing

30 chives, to decorate

 

Yield: 12 crackers 

 

Method: 

 

1. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium-low heat and cook the onion for 3-4 minutes until soft. Add the garlic for the final 1 minute.

 

2. Increase the heat to high and add the chopped mushrooms and thyme. Cook, stirring frequently, until the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms are nicely browned.  Add spinach and cook until soft. Tip into a medium bowl and leave to cool. 

 

3. Add feta chunks and mix.

 

4. Place one phyllo sheet on your worktop and brush with butter. Place a second sheet on top and brush with oil. Add the third sheet on top of the other two. Cut the sheets into 4 smaller rectangles. Place about 3 tbsp of filling along the bottom edge of your phyllo square leaving a gap either side.

 

5. Roll into a cigar shape and brush along the top edge with olive oil to seal. Pinch the edges to form the cracker an secure crevices where chives will later be tied. Repeat the same process with the remaining filling and sheets of phyllo.

 

6. Place the parcels on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment. Brush with remaining butter and bake them at 200°C  for 15 minutes until golden. 

 

7. Once cooled slightly, tie chives around the ends to decorate and create the effect of an edible Christmas cracker. ENJOY!

 

Cheesy Star Puffs

 

Ingredients:

 

1 roll puff pastry

Chives, chopped finely (keeping some aside for the garnish)

120g cheddar cheese 

½ tub cream cheese

1 – 2 eggs, for egg wash

Coarse salt, to garnish

 

Recipe:

 

1. Roll out the puff pastry sheet using a rolling pin and flour. Roll it out until doubled in size.

 

2. Using cookie cutters, cut the pastry into star shapes and put them on the prepared baking sheet (lined with baking paper). 

 

3. In a mixing bowl combine the chopped chives, cheddar cheese and cream cheese. 

 

4. Place 1 teaspoon of the filling in the center of 10 of the 20 puff pastry stars. Brush the edges of these pastry stars with an egg wash mixture and place the second star shape over it, pressing down to secure the edges. 

 

5. Brush each of the puff pastry stars with an egg wash mixture, top each star with a sprinkle of coarse salt. 

 

6. Bake at 200°C for 10-12 mins or until risen and golden.

 

7. Serve in a massive pile, topped with chopped chives & ENJOY!