Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Meat In Puff Pastry

This is the easiest puff pastry recipe that exists.  I've tried and experimented so many different recipes and ways to make puff pastry dough that was not so time consuming.  I finally got it!  There is no other shortcut to make a great pastry dough that has layers and flakiness.


2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter (cubed)

2/3 cup ice-cold water
2 cups flour
1 teasp of salt
1 egg (for egg wash)

Filling (meat)                                                                                                   

1 1/2 pound ground beef                                       
1 small onion, chopped                                             
2 tbsp vegetable oil (to saute the onions)            
1/2 teasp salt
1/4 ground black pepper
1/2 ground red pepper (paprika)
1/2 dried thyme
1/2 dried basil


1.  Place the beef into a deep saucepan adding enough water to cover the meat.  Cook for about 30 minutes at a medium heat (uncovered).  It has to be moist so be sure the meat is not over cooked.

2.  In the meantime, chop the onion and sauté in the stainless steel pan until golden-brown (use butter or oil).  Turn the heat off, then add all the spices and sauteed onions to the meat.  Taste to see if you prefer to add more salt.  Let it cool. 

Note: If you'd like cheese instead of meat as your filling (I make both), look under ''Baked Goods'' for Cheese Pastry from the content table.

Making the dough:

1.  Cut up 2 sticks butter (very cold) into cubes, place them evenly on a plate and chill them in the refrigerator.  I chill the flour in advance too.

2.  Sift flour and salt in a large bowl.  Cut up 1/2 stick cold butter into cubes and add to the flour.  Start squishing the butter with your fingertips with the flour, until breadcrumb consistency.  Avoid over mixing, working as quickly as possible to prevent the dough becoming warm.  You can use a food processor pulsing flour, salt and butter for about 20 seconds.  Then add the remaining 2 sticks of cold butter cubes, pulsing only twice, and water into the bowl of a food processor, again pulsing only couple of times.

3.  Scrape dough, using a rubber spatula from bowl onto a lightly floured surface.  Sprinkle with a little flour, and using your hands quickly gather and shape the dough into a cylinder.  Press down to flatten into a rectangle.  Fold it like a busyness letter and start rolling it up from one end to the other (forgot to take a picture of rolling part).  Wrap tight with plastic and chill it for an hour.

After that repeat the same process of rolling out into a rectangle, folding and rolling up one more time and refrigerate again for another 40 minutes or so.

5.  Roll out the pastry dough into a rectangle (about 13 inch long and 12 inch wide) and cut into square pieces.  Cut the edges with a pizza cutter for the layering results.  Spoon the cheese filling in the center and follow the steps in the pictures.  Brush with egg wash and bake at 375 F for 15-20 min, until golden brown.

Note: You can do triangle shapes instead of square, cutting the edges to seal as shown below.

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