Now we know the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers will be playing in the Super Bowl, so we can get started on answering the really important question – what will we eat while we watch the game? Maybe football game snacks take on more significance when your team hasn’t been in the Super Bowl in like, forever. But enough about the Dallas Cowboys!
For the next couple of weeks, there will be no shortage of great ideas for game time food. Allen usually makes his signature smoked sausage in red currant mustard sauce, and something cheesy is normally on the menu, too. Cheese curds have been very high on our snack food list recently. When we found Henning’s Cave Aged Peppercorn Cheddar Cheese at Central Market last fall displayed next to Henning’s Cheddar Cheese Curds, we had just tasted fried cheese curds at the State Fair of Texas. I bought a carton of cheese curds to try recreating the recipe we had enjoyed at the fair. There was one problem with my plan – the cheese curds were so delicious we ate them before I could get them into the fryer! Cheese curds are bits of cheese separated from the whey before they are pressed together. They have a very mild taste, creamy texture and they squeak when you eat them. We managed to restrain ourselves on the second carton we bought, I found a recipe on allrecipes.com that seemed pretty close to what we had eaten at the fair, so we were in business.
Real Wisconsin Fried Cheese Curds
- 2 quarts oil for frying (I used canola)
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
- 3/4 cup beer
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 2 pounds Henning’s cheddar cheese curds, broken apart
Heat oil in a deep-fryer, or large, deep pot to 375°. Whisk together milk, flour, beer, salt, and eggs to form a smooth, thin batter. Place about 6 or 8 cheese curds into the batter at one time, stir to coat, and remove with wire strainer. Shake the curds a couple of times to remove excess batter. Deep fry the curds until golden brown, 1 or 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels, then serve hot.
These cheesy little gems will start a party in your mouth! They are wonderful solo, but add ranch dip (or maybe a dill dip), and you have a snack with a significant wow factor. I’ve only seen Henning’s cheddar cheese curds in Dallas markets, but their website offers white cheddar, cajun cheese, garlic and dill (be still my heart!), ranch cheddar, pepper cheese, and two tone yellow and white cheddar curds. You could experiment with different flavored cheese curds and dips for weeks.
I haven’t decided yet which Super Bowl team I’ll be rooting for, but there will be cheers for fried cheese curds!