Editor's Note: Every watch party needs a great appetizer recipe! If you're hosting friends for a big event, then these Cheese Nuggets should be part of your menu. This easy appetizer recipe is so easy to make and includes a delicious (and spicy!) homemade dip that will take this snack to the next level. Cheesy as can be, this appetizer is a fried snack that everyone on your guest list will love. If you'd like, you can even make these nuggets in advance, then simply fry when you're ready to get cooking. If you're looking for more ideas for appetizers, then consider taking a look at the authors' recipe for Guacamole for your next event.
These crispy and spicy snacks would be great with a cold glass of beer. Good with pre-dinner drinks or as part of a buffet.
The cheese mixture (without breading) and dip can made 1 day ahead and stored, covered, in the refrigerator.
The nuggets can be frozen, cooked or uncooked, for up to 3 months.
Preparation Time45 min
Total Timea day or more
Make Ahead RecipeYes
OccasionBirthday, Buffet, Buffet Meal, Casual Dinner Party, Cocktail Party, Family Get Together, Game Day, Oscar Night, Sports Party, Tailgate Party
Recipe CourseHors D'oeuvre, Hot Appetizer
MealDinner, Kid Snack, Snack
Taste and TextureCheesy, Crisp, Hot & Spicy
- Cheese Nugget Ingredients
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
- 2½ cups milk
- 2 large eggs, beaten, plus 3 large egg yolks
- 2 cups grated Emmental or Swiss cheese
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
- 2/3 cup oil
- Dip Ingredients
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 red pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 fresh hot red chile, seeded and chopped
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- One 14.5-ounce (411g) can chopped tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- ½ cup heavy cream
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To prepare the nuggets, melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat. Whisk in the flour and cook without browning for 1 minute. Whisk in the milk, increase the heat to medium, and bring to a boil, whisking often, until smooth and thick. Return the heat to low and simmer gently, whisking often, for 5 minutes.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and beat in the egg yolks, one at a time. Sir in the cheese, then season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Spread out the mixture in a shallow rectangular dish in a layer about ¾ in (2cm) deep, smoothing the top. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours.
Cut the mixture into pieces about ¾ × 2 inches (2 × 5 cm), then shape into nuggets. Roll in flour, dip in beaten egg, then roll in the bread crumbs until coated. Chill on wax paper for 1 hour.
To make the dip, heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the red pepper, chile, and garlic and cook, stirring often, about 4 minutes, until softened, Add the tomatoes and sugar, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Purèe in a blender, then add the cream.
Heat the vegetable oil in a frying pan over high heat until shimmering. In batches, fry the nuggets, turning often, about 3 minutes, until golden brown. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Serve hot or warm, with the dip.
Herbed Cheese Nuggets: Stir in 2 tablespoons chopped parsley, chives, and/or thyme with the cheese. Substitute Gruyére or sharp Cheddar for the Emmental, if you wish.
2008 Dorling Kindersley