Since today is Memorial Day and I'm not going anywhere special, I chose to conquer puff pastry. Puff pastry is a type of labor- and time- demanding pastry, but yields light and flaky cookies, tarts, etc. It can also be easily bought at a grocery store, but the homemade version tastes much better if you have five hours to spare. It's an amazing sense of accomplishment when you taste the finished product.
|The black bits on the parchment paper are burnt egg wash. Just peel them off, it'll be fine.|
Don't overwork the pastry or add too much water, as that will make it tough. Treat it like a buttery baby; be gentle.
Homemade Puff Pastry Bowtiesadapted from The Art of French Bakingmakes 21 two-inch bowties
1 2/3 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
pinch of salt
1/4 cup water, add more if needed but less is better!
1/2 cup butter, softened and diced
1 egg, beaten
generous amount of powdered sugar (for heavily dusting the bowties before baking)
Combine the flour, salt and water to make a smooth and elastic dough.
Roll this dough into a 1/2"-thick square and place the butter in the center.
Fold the four corners so that they meet in the middle, covering up all the butter.
then, roll out into a long rectangle, 1/4" thick and fold into thirds. refrigerate for fifteen minutes. Turn the dough ninety degrees. roll out into a long rectangle and fold into thirds. refrigerate for fifteen minutes. Turn the dough ninety degrees. roll out into a long rectangle and fold into thirds. refrigerate for fifteen minutes. Turn the dough ninety degrees. and on and on, at least ten times. Each of these times is called a "turn."
Now we're finally getting close to baking! Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Roll out into a long rectangle one last time and cut into 2"-long strips, about 1" wide. Twist each side one-hundred eighty degrees to form bowtie shapes, and brush with the egg. Heavily dust each bowtie with powdered sugar and place on the sheet.
Bake for 15-20 minutes. My oven isn't that great so I broil for the last two minutes, otherwise it will only brown on the bottom(for my oven.)
Cool on a cooling rack, then enjoy and feel proud of yourself!