Thursday, March 14, 2013

Sweet Almond Pastry

I am trying something new this month....I am participating in a dessert challenge.  I am not certain who is going to eat the sweets but I am certain that I will find somebody who is willing...Mr. T?  Are you ready?

The Dessert Challenge is hosted by Lady Behind the Curtain.  It is a personal challenge and I have the option of playing along or taking a break...I like the flexibility.  I like baking something I have never tried.  I like eating all of it...oops, no, I will not eat all of it...somebody else will.

This months challenge was to make something that used almond paste and pastry.  The first thing that came to mind was the melt in your mouth Twice Baked Croissant at Bakery Nouveau in West Seattle.  It is heavenly...and I would so love to make some.  Not to eat, of course, but to share with others.


I saw them again in Lucerne, Switzerland.  It wasn't really a croissant more of almond rolled in pasty....who cares about the shape...it was delicious!  

So, I was on a quest...but I also wasn't certain if using already baked croissants was acceptable..it was, but I learned that after the fact....so, I decided to use puff pastry and I found a recipe that looked as though it just might work.  Of course the recipe was so easy that I was really skeptical...actually, it is embarrassingly easy...but what is wrong with simple  if it has a great taste?!!!  Nothing!!!

When Mr. T. took his first bite he closed his eyes and said, "I think I am in Bakery Nouveau."  What a nice thing to say...I know it was the way the pasty flaked and the yummy almond flavor....it was close...


Sweet Almond Pastry
adapted from Pepperidge Farm

2 eggs
1 Tbsp water
6 oz almond paste
3 Tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 sheet of puff pastry (Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets), thawed per package directions
1/4 cup sliced almonds
Confectioner's sugar

Heat the oven to 400° F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Using a fork, stir one egg and the water together.

Place the almond paste, granulated sugar, one egg and vanilla in a food processor.  Cover and process until the mixture is smooth.

Unfold the sheet of pastry on a lightly floured work surface.  Roll the pastry into a 12 X 10 rectangle.  Withe the short side facing you, spoon the almond mixture on the bottom half of the pastry to within one inch of the edges.  Cut several 2-3 inch long slits, about 1 inch apart,  on the plain side of the pastry.  Fold this side of the pastry over the filling and seal the edges with a fork.

Brush the pastry with the egg mixture.  Sprinkle with the almonds and place the filled pastry on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake for 12 minutes.  Reduce the temperature to 375° F.  Bake for 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.  Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes to serve warm or let cool completely.  Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar, if desired.

PRINTABLE RECIPE


I enjoyed playing in the kitchen with the puff pastry.  I learned that follow the directions for thawing means just that...the first attempt turned into a ball of dough...I have since learned to read.

Next month is caramel and pretzels...I wonder what I will create....




20 comments:

  1. LOVELY Kate..it does look like a fine pastry shop..
    Closing his eyes did me in..that means a 10.

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  2. I love simple and delicious recipes like this!

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  3. I do believe that if I made this I would eat it all. It looks wonderful! Love your husbands comment too.

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  4. Delicious! I'm bookmarking this for The Baker!

    Best,
    Bonnie

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  5. Great! Puff pastry and almonds---perfect and I want to try this soon!

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  6. We had the same idea! Yours is much prettier than mine.

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  7. Oh my goodness....are you kidding? This looks just like those fantastic desserts in France. I wish, I wish, I lived next door. I will definitely bookmark and just might have to spring this on my neighbors.

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  8. It sure turned out pretty! Bet it was great:@)

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  9. Okanagan Grocers is amazing bakery here in town and makes the best croissants, pain au chocolate and almond crescents in the world. Of course these may very well beat them hands down.

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  10. Thank you for sharing this fantastic sweet and history, Kate.
    Lucerne, Switzerland and Seattle, Washington are towns for food connoisseurs and master chefs.
    And it looks like you've recreated their renditions of sweet almond pastry perfectly.

    P.s.
    Love, love, love your E.B. White quote in your About section =)

    P.s.2.
    I didn’t realize the photo of my contribution to the Dessert Challenge and link back to my site couldn’t be included later after posting as in other groups. Love to have you take a peek at The Ninja Baker’s Petite Almond Puffs.
    http://ninjabaking.com/news/petite-almond-puffs-dessert-challenge

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  11. Almond Paste. It's my G-spot. Love it! That this is simple makes me think, yeah, I can make this on a Saturday morning. Love this.

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  12. Puff pastry is on my bucket list, but in the meantime....

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  13. Oh my...that looks melt-your-mouth heavenly! Wishing for a slice this morning :)

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  14. Thank you for sharing your recipe at BEHIND THE CURTAIN CHALLENGE! I can't wait to see what you create for next month! Pretzels and Caramel! ~Sheryl @ Lady Behind The Curtain~

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  15. Your sweet almond pastry looks divine, I love almond paste! I want to try this soon, an Easter morning treat perhaps...yum! Thanks so much
    Jenna

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  16. Your pastry looks great. I wish I could buy almond paste in my little town!

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  17. What a lovely dessert and so beautifully presented too. Desserts are a challenge to me since I don't have much of a sweet tooth, but I am determined to have a few good dessert recipes under my belt. I just happen to have some almond paste in my freezer...
    Sam

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  18. The funny thing is I just made a recipe with almond paste last week and saw on the puff pastry package a recipe for the rolled thingies with almond paste. I never got around to making them but I'm really loving the one you made! Hmmm, I wonder if my almond paste is still good...

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  19. Easy is GOOD!!! What an amazing pastry with just a few steps...I'm certain it was as yummy as it looks!

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  20. Sometimes the simple ones are the best! This looks and sound delicious.

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