Whew. Holidays + exams = stress. I combat this by eating my feelings. It works out well for me; not so well for my wardrobe. I suspect you’ll find me posting some “lighter” options in the next upcoming weeks 😛
Have I mentioned how much I love puff pastry? This stuff is magical. I have never attempted to make it homemade, however, after being assured by many professional chefs that it is quite a project. Plus, there are so many wonderful frozen options it seems like an unnecessary one. This particular puff pastry is the best I’ve come across, and I wish I could post the name but I can’t recall it and additionally the package isn’t in english. I first ate it at a close friends’ house and his Mum graciously sent me home with a few packages for me to try out. And now I’m addicted.
The beauty of this puff pastry appetizer is that it’s just sweet enough to be a very simple, rustic dessert too. I wouldn’t turn it down for breakfast either, but that’s just me.
Here it is! Make sure it’s completely defrosted before you get started. I am the least patient human on earth; but it doesn’t work out well for anyone 😛 Roll it out as thinly as possible; you’ll probably have to keep flouring up your board and rolling pin.
Grab yourself a yummy pear (or more, if you’re cooking for many people!) and dice him up. Oh; and if you have wine, please drink it. It’s the lesser known advantage of cooking; you’re supposed to always have wine in your hand.
Heat a pan over medium low, and get a hunk of butter going in there.
Everybody in! (ok just the pears)
Now for a couple grinds of nutmeg
Bit of cinnamon:
Andddd a bit of brown sugar!
Let those guys hang out until they soften (but aren’t mushy)
When they’re good to go, set aside and let them cool a bit. Grab some chevre. In this case it’s better to go with an unflavored variety.
Take a little bit and place in the middle of your section of puff pastry. Remember; make whatever shape you want!
Hm. That guy above needs a tad more chevre. Let’s add more. Sprinkle him with a bit of salt and pepper. Just a pinch of both. Then add on your pears.
Now, beat one egg in a small bowl, and brush the edges with egg wash. Then, make him into your desired shape!
I demonstrated it a bit better here
Ok! Now bake him at 375 for about 20 minutes (but keep an eye on it; when the top is pretty and browned it’s good to go)
Let’s check out the goods
Oooo look how flaky this is. It was delish. And this is how mauled it looked after I got into it. So much for picture perfect presentation 😛
Puff Pastry with Spiced Pears and Chevre
- puff pastry, thawed
- pears; the firmer the better. In this case it’s ideal to buy slightly under ripe fruit so it doesn’t get mushy as it cooks
- brown sugar
- 1 egg
- Roll our your thawed puff pastry on a cutting board or flat surface. Use flour to make sure it doesn’t stick, as needed.
- Dice up your pear(s)..the amount depends on how many you’re cooking for.
- Heat a pan over medium-low, and add in a knob of butter. Add in your diced pears.
- Add a couple grinds of nutmeg (or a pinch of the ground variety), a few pinches of cinnamon, and about a 1 and 1/2 teaspoon of brown sugar. Bear in mind, this was for one pear. Just adjust as needed and please taste as you go. You want it to be slightly sweet and noticeably spiced to contrast the chevre.
- Let the pears cook until slightly softened but still maintaining their shape, set aside.
- Add in about a teaspoon of chevre to the centre of your puff pastry shape, and season it with salt and pepper. Put on another teaspoon or more of the pears (make sure to drizzle a little of the butter yumminess over it all)
- Beat one egg in a small bowl and brush the edges of the pastry with a pastry brush, then seal them to close. Brush the outside with the egg wash to make sure the top gets pretty and brown.
- Bake it off at 375 for about 20 minutes, but this varies depending on your chosen shape and your oven. Keep checking on the browness. I baked it on parchment paper but you could just grease a cookie sheet or use a silicone based sheet.