Sunday, September 27, 2009

Puff pastry? FML.

When September's Daring Baker's challenge was revealed, my heart stopped. I starred at it for awhile. Then I texted Joe:
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.

Like so.

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!


Wic said...

I think you did a greaat job and I understand you.
We my family and I don`t like puff pastry and we too had to work hard to get it eaten.

Judy@nofearentertaining said...

Great job on the puff pastry. It looks just wonderful!

Lauren said...

Beautiful job! Your pastry looks amazing =D. Love the "desserts are like wounds..."

Dragon said...

I'd say you master the puff pastry now! Great job on this month's challenge.

Anonymous said...

mmmm...I am seduced by your photos, they look very delicious!

steph- whisk/spoon said...

came out great, even if you weren't the biggest fan. thanks deciding to tackle the challenge this month!

Zita said... did a great job, too bad you don't like puff pastry...well you can always send them to me :)

Jenny said...

I know, SO much butter it can make you sick. They look delicious, nicely done, even if you never do it again (I probably won't, although feel like I should tackle croissants since that is the last of the laminate doughs to attempt).

Katy ~ said...

I have not and probably never will make puff pastry. But if I should ever have a moment of insanity, I hope it looks as fabulous as yours. Positively splendid!

Julie @ Willow Bird Baking said...

Gorgeous layers! I can't believe a basket of puffs went to waste, though! Mmmm.

nikki said...

Next time, send your puff pastry to me. It looks fabulous!

Anonymous said...

that looks like a Delicious Creation!