5.19.2009

Savory Palmiers

Amazingly, May is upon us and my garden club is about to have their end-of-year luncheon, which always means pot luck. And believe me when I say pot luck I don’t mean you get to bring any old thing you want. The food committee is a group of lets-get-it-done organized women, which, oddly enough, is not something I can say about us the rest of the time. A very laid back group to say the least. Anyway...you don’t just sign up for say…a salad… but you have to describe exactly what kind of salad so there are no duplications. I signed up originally to bring a pound cake- always the easiest and serves lots of people- but I didn’t get away with it as everyone else had the same idea. So a phone call from the committee put an end to that; they requested I change my dish from dessert to appetizer. Guess salads were plentiful too as that was definitely NOT an option.

Now I had to mull over this appetizer situation for a while- it’s a luncheon and I was told someone else is bringing shrimp. My hors d’oeuvre repertoire is really geared for cocktail and dinner parties which are a whole different ball game. I thought of a dip- but no- too much like a cocktail party. Thought about my red pepper cheesecake and then remembered we need finger food to start with- that certainly isn’t. And then I didn’t want anything too heavy but I did want something yummy and not run of the mill. Maybe you thought of something right away, but I was stumped.

Ina Garten came to mind the next morning. She has a mouth-watering savory cookie recipe made with fresh thyme and Parmesan cheese, but I think fruit should be served with it and that is way too involved with serving pieces and extra bowls. Things will be bad enough without me adding to the mess. So I flipped a few more pages in her cookbook, and there it was: Savory Palmiers. I’d already made them a couple times so knew I could put them together the day before, stick them in the refrigerator overnight and bake them just before I go over the next day. With our humidity I have found these palmiers lose their crispness really fast so you need to serve them fairly quickly after baking. But as long as I could put them together the day before they would be fine.

Have you had a chance to make them yet? I’ve always been a sucker for sweet palmiers but the savory ones are way better. And best of all: a snap to put together. Is there anything easier than puff pastry? I think Ina has several recipes in this book using puff pastry- it must be this year’s special ingredient for her. Fattening, of course, as a lot of her recipes are but it sure makes life easier. With all the food be available at this pot luck luncheon I don’t think anyone is going to worry about calories of one appetizer- and most people will only eat one anyway. No problem using store bought pesto either, it works just fine. I love that these palmiers can be made ahead and you will love how they taste.

Update: They were a hit! Then right on the heels of that comment came another: “These must have been hard to make.” They couldn’t be more wrong.

Savory Palmiers
(Adapted from Back to Basics, The Barefoot Contessa)


Ingredients:
1 package frozen Pepperidge Farm puff pastry, defrosted
1/4 cup prepared pesto, store-bought or homemade
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese, such as Montrachet
1/4 cup finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Method:
Lightly flour a board and carefully 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.

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 sheet pans lined with parchment paper. Bake for 14 minutes, until golden brown.

3 comments:

  1. YUM! So easy to make & I love the ingredients! Cheers!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I was looking at those in her book the other day! They look wonderful!

    ReplyDelete

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