Last weekend Grace and I hiked to Lake Ingalls to see the glorious golden larches in their prime colors. Remembered that I had leftover puff pastry dough in the freezer from baking the caramelized apple tart, I made Cheese Straws to bring along as snacks.
- Puff pastry
- Egg wash
- Cheese: parmesan, chedder, gruyere or any combination
- Salt, pepper, sesame seeds, dried herbs (I still have a small bag of herbs de Provence I bought at Les Hall d’Avignon during my last visit to Provence, it worked well with this recipe)
- a dash of Cayenne pepper to combat the chilly autumn weather
- Roll the dough to about 1/8 inch thick.
- Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with grated cheese and desired seasonings, herbs and seeds. The amount of salt used depends on the saltiness of the cheese. Roll seasonings into dough.
- Turn the dough over and repeat step 2.
- Cut the dough into 1/2 inch wide strips, twist and pinch onto well-greased parchment paper.
- Refrigerate the cheese straw for at least 30 minutes.
- Bake at 400 degrees until golden brown, about 5 to 10 minutes. Turn the temperature down to 325 degrees and continue to dry if necessary. Baking time varies with size. Small pieces will take about 15 minutes total and larger pieces will take about 20 minutes.
Golden larches (金钱松), also known as Pseudolarix amabilis, is a deciduous coniferous tree native to eastern China. In the autumn, their bright green leaves turn into golden yellow, and sometimes orange, before falling off the tree for the winter.
It was a clear day, at the ridge, we caught a glimpse of both Mt. Rainier and Mt. Adams in the distance.
There were several mountain goats with their babies grazing along the trail and in Headlight Basin.
These fluffy white animals are attracted to salt and can become aggressive if they feel threatened.
The rule of thumb is to always stay away from wild animals, no matter how cute and cuddly they are. And don’t even think about taking selfies!