Our neighbour, Regina, highly recommended these little cheese balls to me and gave me a box of pre-mix to try.
Now, I am not one for food out of a box but Maus’ sister-in-law was coming to dinner the other night. She has a gluten free diet and the ‘gluten free’ banner on the box jumped out at me. These little balls are made out of tapioca flour and can be freely enjoyed by celiacs.
Basically, all you have to do is add water and 2 eggs, mix and then bake the balls for 25 minutes. The side of the box, however, advised (under the heading ‘Important‘ ) that for greater growth, mix the dough in a planetary mixer for 4 minutes. Well, who wouldn’t want ‘greater growth’? I certainly did. So I mixed them for 4 minutes.
Regina also explained that if you make the balls from scratch, the cheese of choice is pecorino. Since I had some in the fridge, I decided to sprinkle some on top. The grated pecorino shows as brown streaks on the balls. It may not have been the wisest decision:(
Anyway, I was very happy with my little balls. They looked and tasted exactly like cheesy choux pastry puffs. They could be filled with any filling you like. I think something ham and cheese-based would be perfect. We had a salsa which wasn’t quite right.
Next day, I showed Regina my balls but she wasn’t impressed. She advised that if I’d mixed them by hand rather than in the mixer, they wouldn’t have risen so much and would have been soft and fluffy inside (which is more to her liking). To be honest, I am not convinced. I thought mine looked superb.
In any event, if you have a guest on a gluten free diet and you want something savoury for entrée, these would be perfect. Regina buys the pre-mix from Kakulas in Northbridge.
I have bought some tapioca flour to try and make them from scratch. There are lots of recipes on the web. I will keep you informed.