Bolinhas de queijo (Cheese Balls)

Cheese Balls is one of the most famous and appreciated Brazilian finger foods. It is an easy, nutritious and cheap recipe, that always enjoys great popularity among guests of all ages.

Ingredients

  • For the dough:
  • • 500 ml milk
  • • 1 level tablespoon salt
  • • 50 g butter
  • • 300 g all purpose flour
  • • 30 g grated Parmesan cheese
  • To shape the cheese balls:
  • • 250 g stretched-curd cheese, cut into cubes
  • • all purpose flour 00
  • • 1 or 2 eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
  • • breadcrumbs
  • • peanut oil for frying

Preparation method

1. Heat milk, butter and salt together in a large pot. 
2. Once the mixture begins to bubble lower the heat and add all of the flour at one time. Mix vigorously with a wooden spoon to avoid lumps, until the dough comes away from the sides of the pan and forms a compact and elastic ball. It only takes a few minutes. Turn off the fire, add the grated cheese and stir well to combine. Let it cool down. You can make this dough the day before, cover it with plastic wrap and store in the fridge. 
3. To make the dough more malleable, knead it by hand just a little. 
4. Divide the dough into small balls (about 18 g each). Press the dough down to make a hollow in the centre of each ball. Place a cheese cube into each dough hollow and fold the dough up to enclose the cube. 
5. Roll stuffed balls into flour, then egg, beaten with a pinch of salt, and then into the breadcrumbs. 
6. Deep fry only a few pieces at a time to avoid lowering the oil's temperature. To test frying oil temperature dip a toothpick into it, if you see bubbles start to form around the toothpick your oil is hot enough to fry. Fry until golden brown and crispy, drain on absorbent paper and serve immediately, very hot.  

Notes
• They can be heated in a gas oven or in an electric oven. 
• They can be frozen before frying; you can fry them either frozen or thawed. 
• You can coat the cheese balls by passing through water with a little all purpose flour or by passing through very cold water (almost iced) and breadcrumbs. 

Yield: 45 cheese balls.
Posted on: 18 May 2017
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