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50 Women Game-Changers (in Food): #16 Maida Heatter - Cheese Pennies

28 comments /
In May '11, Gourmet posted a list of 50 Women Game-Changers (in Food) that runs the gamut from food writers to cookbook authors to television personalities to restauranteurs to chefs to food bloggers.  Some are a given.  Some are controversial.  Speaking the names of some brings fond childhood memories.  Speaking the names of others will make some readers cringe.  And of course, some of our favorites were not even included.  We food-lovers are a passionate bunch of people and whether we agree or disagree, every woman on this list has earned her place for a reason.  Being a woman who is passionate about food (cooking, eating, talking about, writing about, photographing), when I caught wind of Mary from One Perfect Bite's idea of cooking/blogging her way through each of these 50 women...one per week...I knew I wanted to join her.  Many of these women paved the way for us in culinary school, in the kitchen, in cookbooks, in food writing, and on television and I think it is a fabulous way to pay tribute to their efforts.  Some of the women on the list have been tops with me for years.  Some I have heard of (perhaps even seen, read, or cooked from) before.  And there are even a handful that I am not familiar with at all.  I excited to educate myself on each of these women game-changers and hope you look forward to reading along.  We are going in order from 1 to 50.
the "Gourmet" prompt...
16. Maida Heatter- The beloved goddess of apple pie - and coconut layer cake, chocolate Bavarian, lemon squares, cherry cobbler - you name it.  She makes every dessert in the land perfect.
I have had an absolutely maddening week...and in all honesty, I can't form a thought.  Just imagine computer's dying (as in gone!)...school meetings...eye doctors...not enough money (never enough)...stitches in hands...there's more.  In other words, all I can muster up to tell you about Maida is that she is the Queen of Cake!  The Queen of Desserts, even.  I've reviewed a couple of her books recently with some delicious results.  These Cheese Coins/Pennies were excellent, as well.  You can check out the Chocolate Sauerkraut Cake from Maida Heatter's Cakes or Whole Wheat Cinnamon-Nutmeg Cookies from Maida Heatter's Cookies by clicking on the links...or just go straight for the crackers.  Me, since I've already eaten, I'm heading straight for bed.  Forgive me, I hope to have my head on straight soon.
Cheese Pennies 
adapted from Maida Heatter's Cookies
yield: 50-80 coins/crackers

1 c. all-purpose flour
½ tsp. salt
⅛- ½  tsp. cayenne
8 oz. extra-sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded fine
4 oz. unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 Tbs. sesame seeds, toasted
Sift the flour, salt, and cayenne together and set aside.  Beat the butter until fluffy in a mixing bowl, preferably using the paddle attachment.  Add cheese and beat until thoroughly blended.  Gradually add dry ingredients and beat, scraping the sides of the bowl, as needed.  Mix until thoroughly incorporated.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and shape the dough into a log, ~8” long and 1¾” wide.  Wrap in plastic or wax paper and refrigerate for several hours, or up to several days.
Preheat oven to 350° F.   Unwrap the roll of dough and slice into ⅛” to ¼” thick slices and place 1½-2” apart on a cookie sheet (I like to line mine w/ a silpat or parchment).  Generously sprinkle the tops with toasted sesame seeds.  Bake for 12-15 minutes (depending on thickness), until crackers are lightly colored.  They should be crisp, but not over-baked and burnt.

Immediately remove from baking sheets with a thin, metal spatula and place on wire racks to cool.  Serve with cocktails for nibbling or alongside soup and salad.
Maida Heatter
"Happiness is baking cookies. Happiness is giving them away. And serving them, and eating them, talking about them, reading and writing about them, thinking about them, and sharing them with you." ~Maida Heatter
Who is cooking along with these 50 Women Game-Changers?

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28 comments

  1. My kind of biscuit - which I can't stop eating !:)

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  2. Yummmmmm, your cheese crackers look fantastic!!

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  3. Sorry to hear you've had such a hard week! I've made some of her cakes, but never any of her savory recipes; these sound great.

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  4. These are so cute, I can't believe you could slice them that thin! I'm mixing my virtual cocktail right now...

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  5. Thank you; this recipe is a keeper and right up my alley. hope you have a nice weekend.
    Rita

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  6. These look amazing heather and in a harried life seem easy and doable. They are a recipe from Maida afterall and will turn out perfectly!

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  7. Excellent and addictive biscuits..

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  8. The cheese crackers look fantastic!!
    Nice clicks also..Thanks for sharing..
    RecipeRaaga

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  9. Heather, I'm sorry about your week. Sometimes it feels like everything hits at once.

    Wish I could come over and pig out on these cheese crackers with you. Couple bottles of wine and a few pictures of Alcide...ha ha!

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  10. I hate maddening week too, and they seem to happen so often.

    A good bottle of wine, a few of these cheese crackers or the whole thing...It would make for a good Friday evening.

    Have a great weekend.

    Velva

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  11. Sorry to hear that you had a rough week - I am impressed you were able to make these yummy looking cheese coins!

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  12. Esta receta seguro gustará mucho en mi casa !!! me la guardo !!
    Me gustan mucho los comentarios que dejas en mi blog, gracias!!
    Cuando gustes venir, eres bienvenida!
    Slaludos

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  13. I'm raising my 'virtual cocktail' and toasting to a less maddening weekend for you! Here's hoping you raise a mellowing glass of wine and nibble some of your gorgeous crackers and cheese along with ... virtual hug sent your way!!

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  14. These look wonderfully delicious! Bookmarking them now!

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  15. Such a great idea, these sound delicious! xx

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  16. She doesn't make too many savory recipes, but you've got a super one! These look fabulous and crunchy!

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  17. I came across your blog on Designs by Gollum and I love your post!

    I would love it if you would drop by Jane Deere and link up to Fusion Fridays with your favorite or most recent recipes, handmade crafts, diy projects, tips & tricks, and how to's! { open through Wednesday! }

    Jane Deere

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  18. What a lovely biscuit...they look wonderfully delicious! I would love to try these. Hope you have a great weekend.

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  19. Some weeks are like that :( Hope things make a turn-around soon! I could eat about 50 of these little crackers with a glass of wine :)

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  20. Your "YUM" picture of the sesame seeds is just adorable. So creative. These crisps look delicious!

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  21. Sounds like you've had a tough week! Yikes. These do seem like they would make things at least a little bit better. Great recipe.

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  22. Sorry that you had such a rough week, hope that your weekend is a lot better. Love Maida Heatter's desserts but I have yet to try these crackers, they look wonderful.

    Lisa~~
    Cook Lisa Cook

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  23. Maddening weeks like that are rough...I hope you get some R&R today! I think you've certainly done Maida justice...these cheese pennies look so good!

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  24. I hope things start to turn around and your weekend is much better than your week. The cheese coins look perfectly crispy and amazing. i have the cake and cookie books but have yet to cook from them. ;-)

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  25. I know these would be addicting! I've never made anything from one of Maida's cookbooks that wasn't delicious. :)

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  26. I really want to make these. But I know that I'm going to end up eating them them all...in one sitting. :P

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  27. With having a rough week with your computer, you still managed to churn out some lovely posts! Wow, these are right up my alley! I love all things cheese. I would probably eat one after the other, after the other....and forget to stop.

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  28. Well, I'm going to make these and plan on eating them in one sitting. If I plan, then I won't feel guilty, right?

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