Home made Puff Pastry From Scratch

Puff pastry has a reputation of being difficult and a lot of work to make from scratch. I had never attempted it before, but now that I have I thought it wasn’t so hard at all. The main point is temperature control, which is easier right now because it is winter and thus not warm in the house. Puff pastry puffs up because it has a lot of layers of flour and butter. In this recipe, there will be 256 layers! Temperature control is so important because the butter should be soft enough to be able to handle the dough, but not melted to keep the layers intact. This means that a cool room temperature of 18ºC/65ºF is ideal in your kitchen when you make this.

There are several reasons for making your own puff pastry rather than running to the store:

  1. Your own puff pastry will only contain flour, butter, water, and salt. Nothing else.
  2. You will have bragging rights.
  3. It will probably taste better (depending on the quality of the store-bought pastry).
  4. It is cheaper than store-bought.

Running to the store is faster (depending on where the store is), as making your own puff pastry does take about 4 hours. However, most of that time is inactive time with the dough resting in the fridge. Continue reading “Home made Puff Pastry From Scratch”

How to get the Seeds (Arils) out of a Pomegranate

Yesterday I wrote about my ‘discovery’ of fresh pomegranate juice, and complained about the messy procedure to get those arils (seeds) out. Paul and Fae reacted that there is an easier way, which is to whack the pomegranate with a wooden spoon to let the arils fall out. Since I had another pomegranate waiting to be turned into more delicious juice, I decided to try this for myself. And although I still got some small splashes of juice (probably due to my clumsiness), it worked a lot better and quicker. Thanks Paul and Fae! It is always great to learn a new technique. Continue reading “How to get the Seeds (Arils) out of a Pomegranate”

Home-made Ricotta

  I had never made my own ricotta before. It turns out to be surprisingly easy and surprisingly tasty. It is even cheaper than buying ready-made ricotta. I found this recipe with Google, tried it and loved it! Since I wanted to use it for dessert, I decided to add some additional cream. Ingredients For approximately 1 cup (250 ml) ricotta 1 liter (4 cups) whole milk 2 Tbsp white vinegar (I used white wine vinegar since that is what I had) pinch of salt optional: 100 ml (3/8 cups) whipping cream Preparation   Put the milk (and the cream, … Continue reading Home-made Ricotta