For years, I was terrified of attempting making puff pastry. I have a friend who spent a year at Leiths, and went round to his one evneing for dinner. He was making puff pastry, and it looked like very hard work indeed.
But then I found Nigella’s recipe for Rough Puff Pastry in How to Be a Domestic Goddess, and decided to give it a whirl.
I was pleasantly surprised at just how easy it was! There is absolutely nothing complicated about it-you just need to plan ahead, and either make it the day before, or make sure you have enough time for the resting and rolling before you need to use it.
I think it’s waaaaaay more tasty than shop bought, and I make it a lot. I use if for sausage rolls, and pies, and pasties, and for puddings too. I tend to make a batch using the quantities below, use half, and then either keep the other half in the fridge for a week or so, or freeze it.
This is what you need:
- 250g cold butter (I use salted as it’s what we usually have in the fridge)
- 250g plain flour
- cold water
- a food processor (optional)
This is what you do:
- Weigh out the flour and cube the butter straight into the mixer bowl with the blade in place
- Attach the mixer bowl to the base, and put the lid on
- Pulse the mix for 10 second blasts. I do it 2 or 3 times, and then take the lid off to have a look. You want to be able to still see clumps of butter
- Tip the mix into a large mixing bowl, and add 2 tablespoons of cold water. Mix with the blade of a knife. You will probably need to add more water, but only add small amounts at once, and mix in between
- When it all starts coming together, use your hands to clump the pastry together into a lump
- Lift it out, and sqaush it down a bit on to the worktop, and then shape it into a rough disc
- Place in a freezer bag, in the fridge for half an hour to ‘rest’. Rest yourself with a cup of tea
You can see that I wash and re-use my freezer bags…!
- After half an hour (or more), take the pastry our of the fridge and place it on a lightly floured work-top
- Roll it out into a long strip, and then fold it into three, like you would fold an A4 letter to fit it into a business envelope
- Roll this out again into another long strip, and fold again. And then repeat once more (three times in total)
- Rest again (the pastry, and you…)
- When you are ready to use your pastry, roll it out into the shape you want, and use. If you want a really golden brown finish, then brish with beaten egg before placing in the oven. I don’t usually bother with this as it seems like a waste of the rest of the beaten egg! I just brush it with a little milk instead
Do you make your own rough puff?
What’s your favourite recipe for using it in?