It’s National Pastry Day, what better way to celebrate then trying your hand at making your own puff pastry, whipping up a turnover or serving up a homemade sausage roll? Making pastries used to put me off. There’s just something that seems so complicated with a delicate, light pastry that I didn’t think I could accomplish. I’m never a quitter, so I took to my kitchen with pastry in my heart and whipped up homemade puff pastry and sausage rolls for the office.
Are you a pastry guru? Newbie? Just getting your feet wet? I’ll go from the basics to proper stunners in this flakey, yet delicious blog post.
Homemade Puff Pastry
If you have 15 minutes and three ingredients (four if you count cold water) you can make this puff pastry recipe from Dessert for Two. It may not be as simple as rolling out store bought pastry but making my own just feels right, so I like to do it. Plus you can always add spices if you’re doing sausage rolls or a bit of sugar if you want it to be a bit more crisp and caramelised when you’re making turnovers. The biggest thing about making your own puff pastry is knowing exactly what goes in it, no preservatives, no artificial anything.
Let’s start with a pastry based breakfast that isn’t a cinnamon roll, turnover or any type of sweet pastry.
I cooked this for tea last night, in preparation for this article. It was a crowd pleaser – Many thanks to Just a Taste for providing such a fab recipe.
I can’t eat at McDonald’s, since being pregnant just the smell of the oil makes me physically sick but boy do I miss their breakfasts. I love egg muffins and no matter how many English muffins with Canadian bacon and poached eggs I make, they never taste the same. I actually like these puff pastry baked eggs MORE than McDonald’s breakfast, woo there I said it. No oil, no butter, no added fats. I chose spring onions instead of chives and served it with cubed potatoes baked with rosemary and garlic. It was amazing. Just another reason why binner rocks.
Yes, I have gone there and am presenting a beautiful sweet breakfast pastry in the form of these strawberry crossover puff pastries from White on Rice Couple. Filled with tangy berries and sweet cream this would be a joy to wake up to in the morning, or wake your family up with. I can’t wait to make some of these over the Christmas holidays! So incredibly easy, wow your friends with homemade French pastries this holiday season.
Looking for the perfect packup? Perfect savoury breakfast? These ham, cheese and spinach puffs from Eat Well 101 are absolutely delicious. They’re flakey and crispy on the outside, filled with warm, gooey cheese, ham and spinach on the inside. I’m a fan of adding spring onions and finely sliced mushrooms, but then again I love adding vegetables anywhere I can. They are great for make ahead because they are great warm or cold. Need brunch for Christmas Eve or hors d’oeuvres for Christmas day? These are the perfect option for those in between meal times on holidays.
Whilst we’re on the topic of hor d’oeurves we might as well discuss these fantabulous – yes fantastic / fabulous cranberry brie bites from Well Plated. I’m not a massive fan of meat, I’ll eat it, but it’s not the first thing I choose to cook. I love vegetarian dishes that I can serve to everyone, that taste delightful and leave no one left wanting. Appetisers are no exception to the rule. Vegetarian appetisers are typically pleasing to most and who doesn’t love brie? If you don’t, then more for me! These are really easy to make and only require a bit of cranberry, a bit of brie and you can use store bought sheets of puff pastry to make them even easier. So get cooking, Christmas dinner awaits.
As we all know there are more types of pastry than just puff pastry, I’m a fan of short crust pastry for tarts or pies. It is great for anything savoury or sweet and has just the right amount of crunch. Now of course you can buy a short crust pastry pre-made or one of those handy bags made by Aunt Bessie’s but where is the fun in that? Why not make your own. Four ingredients and just a few minutes and voila you’re well on your way.
Take a shot at this recipe from Bake Play Smile. You only need cold water, caster sugar, cold butter and plain flour and ten minutes prep time. It may not be as easy as picking up a pre-made one but I can guarantee it will taste so much better.
We all know that short crust pastry can be used in a variety of pies and tarts, here are a few of my favourite recipes that include short crust pastry. Hope you enjoy one this festive season.
This recipe from Sips and Spoonfuls calls for store bought short crust pastry, now of course you can use that (no judging here!), but why not make your own with 10 spare minutes? The rest of this recipe is quite straight forward and simple. The colours are perfect for Christmas or Valentines day and the flavours are delicate and creamy. I’d love to serve these for afternoon tea during the summer as well as a refreshing change from cakes.
A Jamie Oliver recipe has never steered me wrong so this recipe was the perfect choice for a short crust recipe. The rich chocolate is made even sweeter with the addition of chocolate flakes. If you don’t want to turn your oven on or your oven is full of turkey, ham or other Christmas meats, this dessert is a perfect option because it only uses the stove top and sets in the refrigerator.
I know I didn’t talk about choux pastry, one of my favourites for profiterolès or to make lovely bacon and egg filled mini choux buns, but we’ll leave those beautiful pastries for a day of their own.
Have a favourite pastry concoction? Share it with us on Facebook or Twitter!
Title Image Credit: Jenny Steffens