Showing posts with label rough puff pastry. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rough puff pastry. Show all posts

Friday, January 29, 2016

Sausage Apple Onion Tart #FridayPieDay

The apples and sausages go together beautifully, as pork and apples are wont to do, with the lovely added flavor of baked onions, in a crisp, golden puff pastry crust.  

The beauty of pies and tarts is that they can be sweet or savory. If you aren’t much of a dessert person, you can still enjoy a delicious pie, just add some sausage or salami. This month’s Friday Pie Day tart makes the perfect brunch, lunch or dinner fare and the ingredients are easily changed out for whatever you might have on hand.

I started by making my rough puff pastry recipe, or rather, I should say, Gordon Ramsey’s rough puff pastry recipe, cut off a little more than half and wrapped up the rest and popped it in the freezer. If you haven’t attempted rough puff before, I recommend you try it. It’s easy and way less work that actual puff pastry. In a pinch, of course, you can use store-bought puff pastry.

1 green apple (for example, Granny Smith)
2 teaspoons canola or other light oil
2 medium purple onions
6 fat sausages (about 14 oz or 400g)
A few fresh tender sprigs thyme – or leaves off of older sprigs
12 1/3 oz or 350g rough puff pastry dough from this recipe
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard

Preheat your oven to 400°F or 200°C and prepare a baking sheet by lining it with baking parchment or a silicone liner.

Cut the apple in half, core it and cut it into thin slices, discarding the very end pieces that are all peel. Toss the apple slices in a medium sized bowl, with the oil to stop them turning brown.

Peel the onions, cut them in half and then slices them into thin wedges.

Toss them in the bowl with the apples.

Add the thyme sprigs, ripped into smaller pieces.

Cut the sausages into bite-sized pieces with a sharp knife of a pair of scissors. Mix the pieces in with the apples and onions.

Roll out your rough puff pastry into a large rectangle and trim the edges to make sure it will puff up successfully.

Gently score a line all the way around the inside with the tip of a sharp knife. This will be your puffy, crunchy crust, so don’t be skimpy with the margin.

Spread your mustard all over inside the scored line.

Tip the sausage, apple and onion onto the pastry and arrange it as evenly as possible all the way out to the scored line.

It's a pretty tall pile but it will bake down, I promise.

Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the pastry is puffed and golden and the sausage pieces are cooked through.

Allow to cool slightly before cutting.


This sausage apple onion tart is my contribution to this month's Friday Pie Day, the brilliant creation of Heather from All Roads Lead to the Kitchen. (Formerly girlichef.)

I am pleased to join her on the last Friday of each month for pie and crust recipes, techniques, tools of the trade, and other inspiration.

For more information and recipes, please check out her #FridayPieDay page!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Rough Puff Tomato and Olive Tart

Hands up, who has been to Paris?  Who’d like to go?  And what is one of the number one destination for tourists in Paris.  The Louvre, of course.  Well, guess what?  I saw some treasures from the Louvre today.  In Abu Dhabi.  Yes, that’s right.   Right here in the Sandpit.  Apparently, a new Louvre is being built, and it is scheduled to open in 2015.  The plans look fabulous and there is already a small museum to introduce the bigger one to come, full of painted treasures by the likes of Picasso, Gauguin, Klee, Magritte, Mondrian and Twombly, as well as sculptures, ceramics, metalwork, tapestry and even a fascinating mobile by Alexander Calder.  Appropriate to the educational mission of the Louvre Abu Dhabi - bridging and connecting cultures - two ancient religious texts, the Koran and the Pentateuch, sit side by side in one protective glass case.  Entrance to the current exhibit - Birth of a Museum - is free, along with the narrated audio guide.  Now I can’t wait for the whole Louvre Abu Dhabi to open.  It’s going to be a beautiful place filled with beautiful things.

And now you know why I am late in posting this recipe.   Let us tarry no longer.  We have tart to bake!

1 rectangle rough puff pastry dough from this recipe
7 oz or 200g large grape or tiny Roma tomatoes
2 spring onions
2 cloves garlic
4 1/2 oz or 125g (drained) fresh mozzarella
3 1/2 oz or 100g feta
15 whole black olives
2 eggs lightly beaten
Sprinkle cayenne – optional

Preheat your oven to 400°F or 200°C.

Roll out your chilled rough puff pastry, with a floured rolling pin on a lightly floured surface.

Laying your tart pan on top, cut a circle out of the dough with a sharp knife.

Transfer the circle of dough to the tart pan.

Fold the top under to neaten the edge.

Use a fork to dock the bottom and sides of the dough.

Pop this back in the refrigerator while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

(Stack the leftover dough and wrap in cling film and freeze for later use. Don’t make it into a ball or you will lose your layers.)

Thinly slice your garlic, chop your green onions and crumble your feta cheese.

Pit your black olives and halve them and then halve the little tomatoes.   In a small mixing bowl, lightly beat the eggs.

Okay, now, in a larger mixing bowl, add in your tomatoes, olives, green onions, garlic and the beaten eggs.  Stir to mix.

Fold in the feta.

Pour the mixture into your tart pan.

 I like to straighten out the tomatoes and olives and make the rounded sides face up, because I think it’s prettier that way, but if you don’t care, skip this step.  The flavor will be just as lovely.  Probably.

Now slice the fresh mozzarella into little pieces and poke them in and around the tomatoes and olives.

Sprinkle with a little cayenne pepper if desired.

If your tart pan has a removable bottom, you’ll want to put it on top of another pan before putting it in the oven.  This will make it easier to remove from the oven when hot.

Bake for 40-45 minutes or until the crust is nicely golden and the cheese on top is too.

Allow to cool for a few minutes and then remove the tart pan.  Slice into pieces.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Rough Puff Pastry

Easy to make, rough puff pastry instructions.  So much better than store-bought!

Do you ever go through phases where you watch the one television show you’ve just discovered, marathon style, whole seasons at a time, until you are all caught up?  Don’t try to tell me it’s just me because I don’t believe you!  Bunch of liars.  Yeah, well, now I don’t want to talk about it.

Just kidding!  Maybe I should have started by saying I am not a fan of reality television.  So much of it seems scripted or rehearsed or, at the very least, theatrically designed to cause controversy.  And if you know me at all, you know that I can’t bear to hear or watch people fighting.  So I avoid reality TV.  But, a few months back, a friend told me about The Great British Bake Off.  A BAKE OFF!  So I found it online.  It appeared to be genuine people, real home bakers, vying for the title of best amateur British baker.  The judges were none other than the queen of baking, Mary Berry and dashing bread guru, Paul Hollywood.  Each episode meant three challenges for our bakers.  The first was a signature bake where they used a tried and tested recipe of their own devising.  The second was a technical challenge posed by the judges.  And the third and final challenge was what they called The Showstopper.  Here the home bakers pulled out all the stops to impress the judges with their knowledge, techniques and decorating abilities.

Hooked by the drama, I watched the entire third season in just a couple of days.  It’s amazing the housekeeping chores and laundry - washing, folding and ironing - a person can get through with a good show to watch!  A few times during the season, the contestants were called upon to make something I had never heard of:  Rough puff pastry.  It is sort of like real puff pastry but you just mix the butter through the flour in cubes, instead of one big block, and there was minimal, relative speaking, rolling out of the dough.  I have been meaning to make and master real puff pastry for a very long time but had never gotten around to it.  (Read:  I was lazy but mostly chicken.)  But rough puff looked do-able. And so we commence.

I used this recipe from Gordon Ramsey, whom I love, shouter though he is.  I just can’t watch his shows.  Give me soft-spoken, with a glint in his blue eyes, Paul Hollywood any day.  Like Kenny Rogers before he got crazy with plastic surgery, right?

Photo credit BBC Two - Host profile

2 cups or 250g flour
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 cup + 2 tablespoons or 250g butter, cold
About 2/3 cup or 150ml cold water

Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl.

Cut the cold butter into small cubes.

Add them to the bowl and cut in loosely with a pastry blender.

Not too fine, though.  You want to still see bits of butter.  Gordon wanted me to use my hands but it’s hot, hot, hot here in Dubai and, even with the air conditioning on, the kitchen is really too warm for this sort of pastry.   So I used a pastry blender.

Make a well in the bowl and pour in about two-thirds of the cold water, mixing until you have a firm rough dough adding extra water if needed.  (I did not.  If you are working in a colder climate, you might need it.)

Cover with cling film and leave to rest for 20 minutes in the fridge.  (Longer if you are in a warm climate.)

Turn out onto a lightly floured countertop, knead gently and form into a smooth rectangle.

Roll the dough in one direction only, until 3 times the width.  Keep the edges as straight and even as you can.  As you can see, I didn’t do so good with that step.  Never mind, it all turns out all right.  Don’t overwork the butter streaks; you should have a marbled effect.

Fold the bottom third up to the center, then the top third down and over that.

Give the dough a quarter turn (to the left or right) and roll out again to three times the length.

Fold as before, cover with cling film and chill for at least 20 minutes before rolling to use.

And that’s it!  It actually was very easy.  And the best part was that it puffed up most successfully in the oven.  Also, unlike store bought puff pastry, I knew exactly what had gone into that lovely crust.  Butter and flour and salt.

Stay tuned tomorrow for when I’ll make a pretty tomato and olive tart out of my rough puff.   (That’s a sneak peek in the first photo and again here below.)

So flakey!  So delicious! And actually very easy. 

Get mixing and rolling, lovely people!  Meet you back here tomorrow with your rough puff chilled and ready to bake.