Wednesday, May 5, 2010

If you like to cook and have some time to kill, you might try this:




Home-made Pop Tarts. From this source: 


Homemade Pop Tarts
Adapted from 
King Arthur Flour
Pastry
2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pats
1 large egg
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) milk

1 additional large egg (to brush on pastry)
Cinnamon Filling (enough for 9 tarts)
1/2 cup (3 3/4 ounces) brown sugar
1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, to taste
4 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1 large egg, to brush on pastry before filling

Jam Filling
3/4 cup (8 ounces) jam
1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cold water

Alternate fillings: 9 tablespoons chocolate chips, 9 tablespoons Nutella or other chocolate-hazelnut paste or 9 tablespoons of a delight of your choice, such as salted caramel or a nut paste
To make cinnamon filling: Whisk together the sugar, cinnamon, and flour.
To make jam filling: Mix the jam with the cornstarch/water in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, and simmer, stirring, for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, and set aside to cool. Use to fill the pastry tarts.
Make the dough: Whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Work in the butter with your fingers, pastry blender or food processor until pea-sized lumps of butter are still visible, and the mixture holds together when you squeeze it. If you’ve used a food processor, transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Whisk the first egg and milk together and stir them into the dough, mixing just until everything is cohesive, kneading briefly on a well-floured counter if necessary.
Divide the dough in half (approximately 8 1/4 ounces each), shape each half into a smooth rectangle, about 3×5 inches. You can roll this out immediately (see Warm Kitchen note below) or wrap each half in plastic and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
Assemble the tarts: If the dough has been chilled, remove it from the refrigerator and allow it to soften and become workable, about 15 to 30 minutes. Place one piece on a lightly floured work surface, and roll it into a rectangle about 1/8″ thick, large enough that you can trim it to an even 9″ x 12″. [You can use a 9" x 13" pan, laid on top, as guidance.] Repeat with the second piece of dough. Set trimmings aside. Cut each piece of dough into thirds – you’ll form nine 3″ x 4″ rectangles.
Beat the additional egg and brush it over the entire surface of the first dough. This will be the “inside” of the tart; the egg is to help glue the lid on. Place a heaping tablespoon of filling into the center of each rectangle, keeping a bare 1/2-inch perimeter around it. Place a second rectangle of dough atop the first, using your fingertips to press firmly around the pocket of filling, sealing the dough well on all sides. Press the tines of a fork all around the edge of the rectangle. Repeat with remaining tarts.
Gently place the tarts on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet. Prick the top of each tart multiple times with a fork; you want to make sure steam can escape, or the tarts will become billowy pillows rather than flat toaster pastries. Refrigerate the tarts (they don’t need to be covered) for 30 minutes, while you preheat your oven to 350°F.
Charming tip from King Arthur: Sprinkle the dough trimmings with cinnamon-sugar; these have nothing to do with your toaster pastries, but it’s a shame to discard them, and they make a wonderful snack. While the tarts are chilling, bake these trimmings for 13 to 15 minutes, till they’re golden brown.
Bake the tarts: Remove the tarts form the fridge, and bake them for 20 to 25 minutes, until they’re a light golden brown. Cool in pan on rack.
Whole Wheat Variation: I was itching to swap out 1/2 cup of the flour with whole wheat flour. I am sure it would make it more deliciously breakfast.
Pop Tart Minis: The biggest struggle I had with these was the size. I actually like my baked goods on the tiny size, thus I think this could make an adorable batch of 16 2 1/4″ x 3″ rectangles.
Savory Pop Tarts: Nix the sugar in the dough and halve the salt. Fill with pesto, cheese, ground nuts or olives, or any combination thereof. Brush the tops with additional egg wash and sprinkle with poppy or sesame seeds. Please invite me over.
Do ahead: The sweet versions should keep at room temperature in an airtight container for a week. If you’d like to make them further in advance, I vote for freezing them unbaked between layers of waxed paper, and baking them as you need.
Warm kitchen warning: Guys, I live in an inferno, the kind of steam-heated, 85 degrees inside (68 gorgeous degrees outside) existence many other New Yorkers are familiar with. Between the heat and yesterday’s rainy humidity, me and this dough were struggling. To keep it from being too warm and soft, I was stuffing the trays of dough in the freezer for 10 minute shifts almost every time I worked with them. If you find yourself in an overly warm kitchen working with dough that gets soft too quickly, just keep using your freezer. The 10 minutes here and there that you extend this project will save you many gray hairs as the dough becomes easy to work with again.



Of course, I'm not suggesting you totally give up the processed quick-and-easy-and-gritty version. There's a place for that, but Geez's latest post at Mac N' Geeeeze inspired me to post an unprocessed recipe.

I just might have to try this Friday night. Yeah, that's a wild weekend night for me. ;)

11 comments:

Jen said...

YUM-O!
;-)

Jen said...

...with milk!

Chuck said...

Yeah, that's a wild weekend night for me

Live it up. Our life doesn't get much more exciting. Often a Friday night out for us is driving one of our teenage sons somewhere to have fun.

Brooke said...

Yeah, at least your sons are old enough to go somewhere and leave you and the wife ALONE.

Mine can't do that yet. *sigh*

WomanHonorThyself said...

yummmmmmmmmmmmmm!!!

beamish said...

Fry em!

Snarky Basterd said...

Oh, man. I'd burn them.

Pasadena Closet Conservative said...

I can't be trusted with recipes. Just gimme the box of Pop Tarts and be done with it!

Brooke said...

Beamish: Now there's a thought!

SB, PCC: I fear that by the time I'm finished with this, we'll be eating the boxed ones. :)

Z said...

Hi, and thanks for the nod!
Let me just say that there's SUCH good ready-made pastry dough that you can make your own tarts without having to make your own dough! Sprinkle the outside with sugar, they'll look 'real'! Just a thought!! At least if you don't have much time?
I don't want to dissuade ANYBODY from a 'real recipe' for anything but this tired me out just reading the ingredients! :-)
Also, you can shove any chopped fruits and any spices you want into the pastry squares and seal them up and bake...fantastic!
You can even put a little choppped chicken and curry and chutney sauce or something and close 'em up and bake...mmmm!

have a great weekend, brooke..xx

cube said...

Looks like I'd need all weekend to make these poptarts. Way too complicated for me.