I’m back! It’s been a while… I went away for a mini-vacation, visited family, went on some winery tours, and celebrated my birthday. Before going away and after coming back, things were pretty busy… so all in all, not much time for being creative.
I did, however, have the opportunity to do a little creating in the kitchen.
While I was visiting my sister, she gave me one of the Barefoot Contessa cookbooks for my birthday. She had another of the books, in which I spotted a recipe for Palmiers, and immediately decided we would make them!
Also called Elephant Ears, Palmiers (French for “palm tree”) are sometimes plain, or sometimes have sugar or cinnamon added, but these ones are savoury. I’m not sure how they got their name… I can’t really make out either palm trees or elephant ears in the shape, to me they look more like round-bottomed hearts. Whatever the name, they’re delicious. This recipe includes some of my very favourite flavours.
from Barefoot Contessa, Back to Basics, Ina Garten
1 package frozen puff pastry, defrosted
1/4 cup pesto, store-bought or homemade
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
Lightly flour a board, and unfold one sheet of puff pastry. Roll the pastry lightly with a rolling pin until it’s 9 1/2 x 11 1/2 inches. Spread the sheet of puff pastry with half the pesto.
Then sprinkle with half the goat cheese, half the sun-dried tomatoes, and half the pine nuts. (to toast pine nuts, just put them in a dry saute pan on the stove and stir or shake them frequently, watching closely so they don’t burn… they’ll toast quickly) Sprinkle with 1/4 tsp salt (that seems like a bit too much…. just season to taste).
Working from the short ends, fold each end halfway to the center. Then fold each side again toward the center until the folded edges almost touch. Fold one side over the other and press lightly. Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Repeat for the second sheet of puff pastry using the remaining ingredients. Cover both rolls with plastic wrap and chill for at least 45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the prepared rolls of puff pastry into 1/4-inch-thick slices and place them face up, 2 inches apart, on pans lined with parchment paper (we didn’t have parchment paper so used non-stick baking spray, and it worked just fine).
Bake for 14 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm.
If possible, I recommend serving them as we did… outside, in the sunshine, with a good bottle of wine, and loved ones around the table.