Saturday, February 21, 2015

Puff Pastry Cheese Filling

Ingredients - enough for 1 17-oz pkg (2 sheets) of pre-made puff pastry
6 oz cream cheese
6 oz chevre
¼ C sugar
½ tsp vanilla
optional: 1½ C fruit of your choice; 1 egg, beaten; turbinado sugar

Thaw puff pastry sheets and bring cheeses to room temperature.

Pre-heat oven to 400˚.

Lay puff pastry sheets on parchment lined baking sheets, brush ½ border around the edges with beaten egg.

Thoroughly blend softened cheeses and sugar. Divide the cheese mixture evenly between two puff pastry sheets, spreading in a thin layer over one half of the sheet, leaving egg brushed border bare. If desired, top each with ¾ cup of fresh fruit* of your choice.

Gently fold the puff pastry sheet in two, bringing the empty half over the cheese spread (and fruit) to align edges. Press edges with a fork to seal.

If desired, brush tops with additional beaten egg (thinned with a little water if needed) and sprinkle lightly with turbinado sugar.

Bake 25-30 minutes, or until tops and edges of puff pastry are golden brown and crispy. Delicious warm or cold.

* Personally, I love berries and often use a berry mix. Blueberries and blackberries are plenty sweet on their own, but if I'm using raspberries I'll often lightly sweeten them before layering them over the cheese in the puff pastry.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Chocolate Peanut-Butter Molten Cake

Found this recipe for a single-serve molten cake...easy to double or make more.

3 tsp butter
¼ C chocolate (chips, or chopped)
1 egg
1 Tbls + 1 tsp sugar
1 Tbls peanut butter
1½ tsp flour
non-stick cooking spray
1 tsp cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 375˚. Spray ¾-cup ramekin with non-stick cooking spray; dust with cocoa powder and set aside.

Using a double boiler or microwave, melt butter and chocolate. (This is a very small amount; if using a microwave, be very careful not to cook your chocolate!)

In a separate bowl, whisk egg, sugar and peanut butter until light and creamy. Stir in chocolate until well incorporated; add flour, stirring until just combined. Pour into ramekin.

Set on baking sheet; bake approximately 10 minutes - a little less for a runnier molten center (about ¾" around the edge will look dull, with the center still moist), slightly more for a creamy yet 'set' center (almost all of the top will look dull/dry).

Let cake cool 2 minutes before serving; cake can be (carefully!) inverted onto dessert plate and dusted with cocoa powder or powdered sugar if desired.