Flamin' Hot Cheeto Mozzarella Hearts
- Total: 2 hr 5 min(includes freezing times)
- Active: 35 min
- Yield:12 hearts
- Put the unwrapped mozzarella blocks in the freezer for 30 minutes to firm. Meanwhile, pour the cheese-flavored snacks into a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Reserve 1 cup for sprinkling at the end and transfer the rest to a large bowl. Put the eggs in a separate large bowl.
- Unwrap the cold blocks of mozzarella and use a long, thin knife to cut them in thirds lengthwise through their narrow sides (like sandwich bread), so you have 6 thinner blocks of mozzarella. Using a 2 1/2-inch-wide heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut out 2 hearts of cheese from each thin block; you should have 12 hearts total. Using the tip end of the heart cutter, cut out a deeper cleave in the top of each cheese heart to make the heart shape more defined. Save the scraps for another use.
- Dip each cheese heart in the beaten egg, then toss in the cheese dust until fully coated. Repeat 2 more times to create a very thick coating, then transfer to a baking sheet. Freeze the cheese hearts for at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
- Pour enough oil into a large heavy pot to come 2 inches up the side and attach a deep-frying thermometer to the pot. Heat the oil over medium heat to 350 degrees F. Using a slotted spoon or strainer and working in 3 batches, lower the hearts into the oil and fry until browned at the edges and the cheese is fully melted, about 4 minutes. Lift the hearts from the oil and transfer to paper towels to drain.
- Transfer the hearts to a platter and sprinkle with the reserved cheese dust. Pour the ranch dressing into a small serving bowl and pour the hot sauce in the center of the ranch dressing. Drag the tip of a knife straight through the center of the dressing and hot sauce to form a heart shape. Serve the fried hearts while hot with the spicy ranch dipping sauce.
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