I started this blog a few years back hoping to bring some of you over to this space so that you might be inspired to cook up some homemade goodness.
But, I totally get this crazy busy life we live in.
Especially over the holidays, when we are strapped for time, I know that I even welcome shortcuts. Heck, forget holidays…shortcuts are awesome ALL the time.
Even though I am a sucker for “made from scratch” goodness, there are many times that I think about ways to make cooking easier by using store bought items.
And that, ladies and gents, is how this tree was born.
I saw a picture of a similar tree online but it had no recipe attached. I tried it last year with store bought pizza dough. It was yummy (and fast), but the problem with store bought pizza dough is that it may have risen and deflated by the time you buy it, which will make the end result of your dish not yummy.
Then you’ll be sad.
And I don’t want you to be sad.
Enter exhibit A: store bought biscuit dough. Genius!
Now, I’m sure baking these biscuits according to package instructions to make actual biscuits would be fine (although I would definitely prefer homemade), but there is such an advantage to having a package of these in your fridge to create some cute and creative dishes.
If you open up the package and cut each biscuit into 4 pieces and then wrap each piece around a small square of cheese…
…then form it into a tree…
and then bake it off and brush it with a mixture of chopped garlic and parsley, you will have a great conversation piece that your guests can nibble on while you finish off dinner.
I mean, double genius, right?
And this is where your creative genius comes in…make it into a star or a circle or whatever your heart desires. Fill it with salami squares and dip it into a marinara sauce. Heck, you can even fill it with Nutella for a sweet option.
- 1 package store bought biscuit dough (like Pillsbury brand)
- 40 small (1/2″ x 1/2″) pieces of mild meltable cheese (like hard mozzerella)
- sea salt
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1/4 c minced parsely
- 1/4 c olive oil
- Fresh thyme for decorating and a bottled red pepper (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and prepare a baking sheet with parchment.
- Open the package of biscuit dough and cut each biscuit into 4 pieces.
- Flatten each piece and place a piece of cheese in the middle of the biscuit quarter; wrap the dough tightly around the cheese and place on the prepared baking sheet.
- Continue until you have used up all the dough and place the dough wrapped cheese balls onto the baking sheet in the shape of a tree.
- Bake in the oven for about 12 minutes or until the tops are golden.
- While the tray is in the oven, combine the parsley, garlic and oil and set aside.
- When the tree is baked, remove from the oven and brush with the garlic and parsley mixture; sprinkle with sea salt.
- Place on a wooden board and decorate, if using, with thyme along the bottom and a red pepper star (cut using a cookie cutter) on the top of the tree.
- Enjoy warm as cheese will be soft and melted.
So, come on now people. Show me the goods! Make me happy and show me how you’ve used your creative genius to take short cuts to a whole other level!!