Me: Aaarrrgh! This month's challenge: puff pastry.
Joe: That blows.
Puff pastry is one thing I've always said is not worth making and it truly never occurred to me to attempt it. I had looked at the process and laughed. I work with puff pastry, oh I don't know, NEVER. I don't really like it. I'm not a big fan of crispy, buttery things. Potato chips? No. Pie crust? No. Puff pastry? You get the idea. I almost decided not to do the challenge... but I then I did. I'm a strange creature.
Blurb'o the month:
The September 2009 Daring Bakers' Challenge has been chosen by Steph of a whisk and a spoon. Steph chose Vols-au-Vent, which we are pretty sure in French means, “After one bite we could die and go to heaven!”The process was not as bad as I thought. Hard? Not really. Time consuming? Um yeah. Then again, I made the recipe in one day and it could be easily split up throughout a couple days.
I think my croissant making class also helped, since at least somewhere in the back of my reptile mind the phrase 'butter package' made sense to me.
I saw this picture three weeks after I took it said, "Wow, there's so much butter in puff pastry that it looks like a slab of butter!" and then I realized: this IS a slab of butter. I beat this out with a rolling pin before folding it into the dough.
Apparently I got tired of coating my camera in butter and flour because the next picture I took is this one, hours after the last photo.
I filled my little puff pastry baskets with vanilla bean pastry cream and blueberries and served them at my weekly Top Chef party. Which isn't really a party at all, it mostly consists of my boyfriend, my best friend and me watching Top Chef and eating. I wasn't a fan of the recipe I used for the pastry cream and had to alter it a lot to make the texture smooth and not starchy. However, Katie declared her undying love for it and was about ready to bathe in it so I guess it was a success.
I thought about captioning this photo with: Desserts are like wounds. The best kinds are the ones the ooze. And that's what happens to your mind after working in a hospital for four years.I made half the recipe of puff pastry and baked about 1/4 of the dough I prepared. I had a few baskets left over after Top Chef night but neither Joe or I ate them and I ended up throwing them away. The rest of the pastry sits in my freezer and I'm sure Joe will do something with it someday. But I just don't care enough about puff pastry to make it again. I'm glad I made it though, it made me feel like a baking superstar! Which I am, obviously.
Excuse me, somebody hasn't had their slice of humble pie today. Humble puff pastry? Har. I won't post the recipes used because this post is already about nine years long.
As usual, I look forward to next month's challenge, though I hope it's something I like a little more!