Have you ever tasted something expecting it to taste one way, but having it taste completely different to what you thought it would be like?
A couple of years back, I was at a Christmas drinks party of a friend who happens to be a fabulous cook. She is especially talented when it comes to creating food for entertaining. When you are at one of her parties, you can expect really beautiful and elegant food. I look forward to her functions every time as I am always pleasantly surprised by what she chooses to serve up.
This particular Christmas party was a cocktail party and my friend had prepared a buffet style menu. When I think of a buffet I think of paper plates loaded with ham and pasta salad, usually at a big family function. This was not that kind of buffet. My friend had prepared a feast for not only our stomachs but our eyes as well! The buffet table was a double tier table that had an upper and a lower table surface. And this was filled with the most incredible looking food. The bottom tier had all sorts of beautifully presented food; from seafood to delicate finger foods, you name it and it was all there. The top tier though was dedicated to dessert; panna cotta, trifle, cakes, biscuits, fruit and different cheeses.
Having feasted on some lovely food that evening, I turned my attention to something sweet. I zoned in on a platter of delicious looking biscuits and decided to try one. I was expecting a decadent, crispy and most of all sweet biscuit. This is not what I got. What I tasted instead, was decadent, crispy but very much a savoury flavour. The biscuit packed a punch with a definite hit of parmesan and an ever so slight chilli heat. It was absolutely delicious! I have always held on to this memory, mostly because I was expecting to taste one thing but instead got a pleasant surprise that only comes with the unexpected.
These biscuits are inspired by my friend's biscuits from that night. They make a really lovely addition to a cheese and fruit platter.
Savoury parmesan, chilli and pepper biscuits
Makes about 15
75g plain flour
65g parmesan cheese, grated
65g butter, chopped
1 tsp salt flakes
½ tsp ground black pepper
½ - 1tsp dried chilli flakes
2 Tbs cold water
1.Place all ingredients into a food processor and process until a dough comes together.
2.Place a sheet of baking paper (approx 20cm in length) on a bench surface.
3.Roll the dough into a log with a 4-5cm diameter. Roll in the baking paper twisting the ends to secure. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
4. Preheat oven to 190C. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
5.Remove the dough from the freezer. Slice into ½ cm slices and place on the baking tray.
6.Bake the biscuits for about 10-12 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.