Apologies for posting after almost a month. Been caught up with school and work.
Phew… it’s been really exhausting but glad to have found the time to write this post because it is officially the last winter recipe for the year.
Spring is hereeee. It makes me so happy because after experiencing an Aussie winter, I prefer summer to it any day.🙈
Even though winter may have almost come to an end, that doesn’t mean we stop eating pies right?
First questions first. What makes pies feel like magic in our mouths? Yesss, it’s got to be the pastry in these flavourful treats that makes it the hero.
Puff pastry can get quite intimidating. And when you can pick it up from the counter these days, you wonder why should I go through all that hassle. But trust me, once you start making your own puff pastry at home, you will never want to pick it up from the store again.
What exactly is puff pastry? It is countless layers of butter trapped in layers of dough that puffs up when put in the oven as the liquid from both the butter and dough evaporates, creating the flaky, crisp result.
While making puff pastry, the environment needed is quite similar to that of croissant dough. You need to work in cooler conditions otherwise your butter will melt into the dough even before you’ve finished your folds and the whole lamination is ruined.
Let me be honest, it is not easy but once you get the hang of it, you’ll find it not as tedious. Plus, the results are so worth it!!
We first start off with a lean dough(flour+water) and then add in the butter sheet. I have tried to explain it as clearly as possible in the method section but do feel free to ask questions if you get stuck in the comments below. Finally, ending up with this rich, beautifully laminated dough.
Also, while making the lean dough, try not to overmix it as you don’t want to create much gluten at this stage. The dough must contain only around 60% gluten. Otherwise you won’t end up with nice layers.
The next most important ingredient in puff pastry is butter. It is what makes the pastry so flaky and delicious. A lot of care must be taken while handling butter. It must be cold yet pliable. So one great tip is to roll it out twice and then chill it before adding to the lean dough.
Once you’ve got your butter to the right texture, it’s time to start the turns. Basically a ‘turn’ is rolling out the dough and folding it. Be very careful to roll out in one direction and the seam is facing you, otherwise you won’t get nice, clean layers. Sometimes while rolling the butter may try to pop up, in that case sprinkle a little flour over, but try to avoid that from happening because more flour you keep adding, the less flaky your pastry becomes.
If the room is getting warm, chill the dough after every turn for atleast 20 minutes. The worst thing that can happen is working with melted buttter dough.
Also, I strongly recommend to make it the night before to ensure best results.
There’s so much you can do with puff pastry. We’ve made palmiers, vol au vents, tarts etc in school and they’ve come out so good.
It may seem like quite the task but pays off at the end! I’ve gone the French route and stuffed my little pastries with beef bourguignon which is a classic dish of Burgundy, where meat is braised in red wine and stock. I’ve added a bit of my own twist to it, using some Indian spices, taking the flavours to a whole different level.
Hope you guys enjoy this recipe and looking forward to some comments below 🙂