How to make Tequeños or Venezuelan Cheese Sticks
What are Venezuelan Tequeños? My heart wants to tell you that they are fluffy sticks full of cheese and happiness, but if I have to describe them being objective then I tell you that they are cheese sticks covered in dough, usually fried.
Tequeños are traditionally filled with cheese, but remember that cooking is about experimenting a bit and it is always a good idea that while you prepare your classic cheese tequeños, make some with cheese and salami, or with cheese and guava candy, for example.
This recipe is perfect for meetings, parties, etc. because you can prepare the tequeños in advance and simply fry them on the spot. Remember to serve them with your favorite dips, I assure you that there will not be one left over.
Tequeños: Venezuelan Cheese Sticks
- 4 cups of all-purpose flour
- 2 eggs beaten
- 3 tablespoons of butter
- 1/2 cup of water more or less
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 500 grams of semi-hard cheese
- Oil for frying
- On a large, clean and smooth surface, place the four cups of all-purpose flour and a teaspoon of salt. You must form a mountain of flour and with your fingers, open a hole in the center, forming a volcano.
- Inside the flour volcano go the tablespoons of butter. With clean hands, begin to incorporate the flour until you achieve a sandy texture and that the butter has been incorporated as well as possible into the mixture.
- Repeat the shape of the volcano but now with the sandy flour and butter mixture. Add the beaten eggs to the center of the volcano and again incorporate with your hands. If you don’t have a large surface, you can do it in a large bowl.
- After incorporating the eggs, add the water little by little. Mix until all the ingredients are integrated and then knead on the flat surface to achieve the perfect dough that must be smooth, uniform, elastic and that does not stick from the table.
- Place the dough in a large bowl and let it rest for at least 20 minutes before starting to assemble the tequeños.
- The cheese that must be used has to be semi-hard since some a soft cheese will leak out when frying.
- Cut the cheese into sticks about 5 cm long and 1-2 cm wide. Have them ready on a plate.
- Spread the tequeño dough on a clean surface with a sprinkle of flour, and roll out the dough with a rolling pin to make it about 2mm wide. If you are one of those who cook visually, what you should note is that the dough is thin enough to handle but that it has the necessary thickness so that it does not break when folded.
- Cut the dough into long strips that are slightly wider than the cheese sticks.
- Roll the cheese stick with the dough strip, make sure to cover the cheese completely or it will come off when the cheese melts. Press both ends of the tequeño to secure the dough. This step is very important, and you will get better with practice too.
- Put the oil in medium pot over medium heat and wait until the oil heats up.
- Start frying the tequeños and turn them every 2 or 3 minutes. When they look golden, take them off the heat and put them on absorbent paper to take care of the excess oil.
- Serve alone or with a dipping sauce.