Sunday, February 6, 2011

Puff Pastry

First up for the next dinner: puff pastry for the tomato tart. Luckily i've made it before, and knew it was going to take a while because of the wait time, so I "scheduled" this in for a Sunday evening. And you know what? It was even easier than the last time I made it! (and I got an extra special snack treat out of it :)

Basically you mix the dough, mostly by hand, until its combined:

Then you take a giant portion of butter (a POUND!) and a little flour, and smack the crap out of it until its malleable. Imagining a hated-partner's face is optional, but may help if you start to run out of steam before the butter is soft enough.

Then your hands are too messy to take pictures of all of the next steps, but it goes something like this: roll out little triangles, stick the malleable butter block in the middle, fold it up like a package, and roll that bad boy out.

Eventually you'll have the appropriate sized square and fold it up to let it "rest" in the fridge. Because it must be exhausted after all the work.

After doing this a couple of times, I decided it was probably best to roll an appropriate sized piece and cut out the rounds rightnow, rather than waiting. It was a good call.

And the best part... after cutting rounds, there are scraps just aching to be cooked and eaten! So I rolled out the dough, but it into strips, sprinkled some cheese on them (because, really, we know that the butter needed a little cheese accompaniment), and baked for a while.

And you know what? They were delicious. Honestly comparing them to the other puff pastry i've made (from Sherry Yard's book The Secrets of Baking), the other pastry was better - flakier and a little more moist. But this was still pretty tasty, and surprisingly easy for something that took about 4 hours of time.

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