This rule-breaking pastry ditches butter and uses sharp cheddar instead. Think part flaky pie crust, part cheese straw. Permission to turn it into your new go-to dough: granted. But first, try these apple turnovers that happily live between savory and sweet. —Emma Laperruque
Make the all-cheddar pastry dough. Combine the flour and salt in a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add the grated cheddar and pulse 3 or so times to just incorporate. Evenly pour the water on top. Continue to pulse—in short bursts—until the dough is evenly curdy and crumbly. If you grab some with your hands and squeeze, it should hold together easily.
Lay a big piece of plastic wrap on a clean surface. Dump the dough onto it, then form into a square. Wrap with the plastic wrap, then press down gently so it tightly fills the plastic wrap.
Chill the dough for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 days.
When you’re ready to make the turnovers, heat the oven to 375° F. Line a sheet pan with parchment or a silicone mat.
Combine the prepped apples, brown sugar, and salt in a bowl. Hold off on the flour for now, so the sugar has a chance to draw out those appley juices.
Remove the dough from the fridge and cut into 4 even pieces. If you want to be perfectly even, you can weigh them to confirm evenness—each should be about 86 grams.
Dust a clean work surface with flour. Roll each dough square into a 6- by 6-inch square.
Now add the flour to the apples and toss.
Divide the apple mixture evenly among the dough squares. (Again, you can eyeball this, or measure—about 100 grams or heaping 1/2 cup each.) The apples should be focused in the center, but forming a diagonal line of sorts instead of a big mound.
Close each turnover from corner to corner. You might need to gingerly stretch the dough over the apples. If it tears in any place, don’t worry; you can pull a little dough from the edge to patch it up or just leave alone. Crimp the edges of each with a fork. Use a small, sharp knife to cut 2 or 3 slits in the top of each.
Transfer to the prepared baking pan. Bake for 28 to 32 minutes, until the tops and bottoms are deeply browned.
Eat warm or at room temperature, but hopefully the day-of. If you have any leftovers the next day, you can refresh them in a 375° F oven.
Emma is a writer and recipe developer at Food52. Before this, she worked a lot of odd jobs, all at the same time. Think: stir-frying noodles "on the fly," baking dozens of pastries at 3 a.m., reviewing restaurants, and writing articles about everything from how to use leftover mashed potatoes to the history of pies in North Carolina. Now she lives in Maplewood, New Jersey with her husband and their cat, Butter. Stay tuned every Tuesday for Emma's cooking column, Big Little Recipes, all about big flavor and little ingredient lists. And see what she's up to on Instagram and Twitter at @emmalaperruque.