There is a right time and a wrong time for everything. Somethings happen at the exact moment they should and others at the exact moment that they should not. I recently started practising a healthier lifestyle, as in not as healthy as it needs to be but healthier than I have done before. So my prime motive was to reimagine and recreate most recipes to suit my healthier goals. I did succeed almost all the time. But then I came across this recipe which just could not be altered but was so good that I could not resist. Damn you recipe!
So here goes –
Plain flour 200 gms
Unsalted butter 100 gms
Salt 4 gms
Sugar 4 gms
Water 85-100 ml
If you do not have a weighing scale, then just use the recipe in the same proportion i.e. 1 cup flour would need 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 tsp sugar and salt each. I am guessing that should work.
Sift the flour and mix it with sugar and salt.
Add water and knead it into a soft dough. Add 5 gms of butter to the dough and mix well.
Refrigerate it for half hour.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll it into a thin long rectangular sheet.
Take 45 gms of butter and apply it to 3/4 of the sheet. Take care not to apply it to the ends of the dough sheet.
Fold the dough sheet as shown below.
Refrigerate for half hour in a plate dusted with dough. If you want, you can cover the plate with a cling film else you can leave it as is.
Remove from the refrigerator and roll the dough into a thin rectangular sheet. This needs to be done carefully so as to ensure the butter does not come out of the dough. Apply the balance 50 gms butter and fold it the same way as shown above.
Refrigerate it for half hour again. Remove the dough after half hour and roll it into a sheet carefully. This time we do not need to add any butter but we need to fold the sheet in the same way as shown above.
Refrigerate for 40 minutes.
Remove the dough and roll it out into a thin rectangular sheet.
Cut out the corners so as to make it into a good shaped rectangle. You can use a pizza cutter if you have or the plain old knife would do.
If you are cutting with the knife then don’t drag the knife across the dough. Just position it and keep it pressed. Lift the knife and position and press at the next part of the dough.
There are various ways to make the puff pastry. It can either be plain or stuffed. It can be done in various shapes and sizes. I tried out the following ones. You can let your imagination and Google search run wild and come up with various shapes and designs.
I cut the dough into 4 parts. For the first pastry, I used a small cup to make two circles in the dough.
I put some filling on one of the circles and closed it with the other.
I used a fork to press down the dough to stick to the bottom part. It gives the pastry a good design as well.
For the second pastry, I made a simple big cirle, stuffed it with some filling and folded it into two making it a semi circled pastry.
The third and fourth pastries were to be square ones. I had a square cup which I used to cut the dough in shape.
For the third pastry, I cut the dough into a square and stuffed it with filling and folded it along the diagonal making it a triangular pastry.
For the fourth pastry, I used the square cup to cut 2 squares, one within the other.
Just fold the outer square as shown below –
You can fill this with jam or cream or any other savory filling.
So, my four pastries were ready!!!
I also added the balance dough, which were left over from the borders of all this shaping business. I made them into small rolls and put them on the baking tray.
Then I brushed all the pastries with some milk just before I put them in to bake.
Bake at 200C for 25-30 minutes till the top gets a nice brown colour.
See the layers in the puff pastry thanks to all that folding and rolling out the dough!
The filling can be any mix of vegetables or jam or cream. I used the previous day’s leftover vegetables as a filling.
If you find a way to make this recipe healthy, please drop a line here!