Tuesday, March 24

Pi Parmesan Crackers

Hi! This is Bayani, Raoul's middle brother. If he ever mentions a Diko, that's me. I'm working up to Raoul's level of ingredient quality. My specialities are desserts, experiments, being a nerd, and being a packrat. Yes, they're actually all relevant to my cooking style. But let's start off by looking at something I'm tinkering with for a party.

A little background: I've got a friend who every year throws a pie party. People bring pie, both sweet and savory. And then there's me. I bring objects shaped like pi. As in the Greek letter, the one you keep seeing around circles. Year one, it was cookies. Year two, donuts. Year three, puff pastry. (As an aside, I went to Copper Gifts, and asked them to make me a custom pi cookie cutter. Turns out it's a stock shape.)

This year, I'm going with something different. I saw St. Alton making parmesan crisps. Basically, if you spread a little parmesan cheese on a silpat and bake it at 300 degrees for 6 minutes and let it cool, it becomes a little savory cracker. Immediately, I figure I can shape these things.

You can probably do this with any metal cookie cutter. Just set it down on a silpat or piece of parchment paper, and spray the inside of the cutter with some non-stick spray. Pack a little shredded parmesan in there, and try to push it into the corners. Grind on a little pepper or shake on some paprika, if you're feeling sassy. Slide it all into a 300 degree oven, and go do something else for 5-6 minutes.

When it comes out, it might stick to the sides of the cutter. Just poke them out and let them hang out on a cooling rack.

So there it is. A pi-shaped appetizer to make any geek proud. Even the ones who only know pi to seven places.

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