TWD: Parisian Apple and Peach Tartlets + Homemade Rough Puff Pastry

by Holly on June 9, 2009

Tuesdays with Dorie this week is hosted by Jessica of My Baking Heart. Jessica chose the Parisian Apple Tartlet. This dessert couldn’t be simpler to make… so leave it to me to try to complicate it!

The recipe only calls for a 4-inch round of puff pastry, half an apple, some brown sugar and some butter. Easy, peasey. On top of that Dorie says you can use apples, peaches, pears, plums or apricots to make these. I decided to make two with apple and two with peach.

I added a little extra brown sugar, just because that’s how I roll. The pastry was flaky, tender, buttery and the best I’ve ever had. The fruit was just so-so for me. Of course, that is in large part due to the fact that I am not a big fan of baked apples. I am a fan of baked peaches, but the only peaches at the store were small and not very ripe. They really didn’t stand up to the potential of the tartlets.

These were too fun and easy to just set the recipe aside though. DH really liked the apple tarlets, and I will definitely be trying these again when peach season really rolls around here.

Dorie suggests that if you can find all-butter puff pastry, it is the way to go. The thing is that when I searched for all-butter puff pastry a while ago, the only place that I found it was at Whole Foods. It was, if I remember correctly, around $10 for a very small package. I just couldn’t bring myself to pay that when I have seen so many delicious looking recipes for a “rough” homemade version of puff pastry which only called for four ingredients that I ALWAYS have on hand – butter, flour, water and a little sea salt. Add to that the fact that we made the danish dough for Daring Bakers a while back and it seemed that it was a similar technique.

So, I made my own rough puff pastry and now, honestly, I don’t know that I’ll ever buy puff pastry again. It was a bit of work, but totally worth it and what work there was was actually pretty fun.

After all, I think it was pretty fun to pile equal amounts of flour and tiny cubes of butter in the middle of my counter top, plus a sprinkle of sea salt. Then I got to play with my food by crumbling, rubbing and mixing it all together by hand. Dump in some ice water in and mix some more and knead to make a nice dough ball.

After that it was just a matter of patience while the dough chilled in the fridge before rolling it four more times. Yup, four times. They are called turns. As in roll, then fold like a letter, then turn the dough, roll it again, fold it again and more time to chill. Repeat the rolling and folding two more times, then chill a bit more, and voila! You have rough puff pastry.

Make sure to check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll for more lovely tartlets!

For the rough puff pastry recipe go here (there is video also). It can also be found in Pastry by Michel Roux.

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Chavi June 9, 2009 at 6:10 am

Really elegant dessert. I enjoy making puff pastry from scratch.. I never think it's going to puff because I made it… but then.. it does! Love your blog!

MemΓ³ria June 9, 2009 at 6:38 am

I'm so glad you made the puff pastry from scratch. Although time consuming, it is quite fun to puff pastry at times, and it can be highly rewarding. Your pastry looks perfect! Good job!

MemΓ³ria June 9, 2009 at 6:39 am

*fun TO MAKE puff pastry

Rachelle @ "Mommy? I'm Hungry!" June 9, 2009 at 7:21 am

lol I love how those of us who made our puff pastry said we complicated this easy recipe! Your pastrty came out great!! Mine, not so much.

Snooky doodle June 9, 2009 at 9:20 am

oh this looks delicious and that puff pastry is so puffed . gorgeous! great with peaches too πŸ™‚

Mary Ann June 9, 2009 at 12:08 pm

Your tartlets look so good! There really is something so delicious about peaches and brown sugar.
and the puff pastry looks amazing.

Sarah June 9, 2009 at 12:13 pm

I'm so jealous of your beautifully puffed pastry! I used a similar recipe with a different technique and it didn't puff at all. I'm thinking I may be able to save the rest of the dough by rolling and folding it, though. Great job!

isa June 9, 2009 at 12:43 pm

Your tartlets looks perfect, such puffed pastry!
Nicely done!

Sweet as Coco June 9, 2009 at 1:00 pm

Leave it to you for making it difficult. πŸ˜‰ I love that you made your own and I thought about it but…I've never seen it done nor was I sure how good it was. Thanks so much for the quick jist of how to do it because I am definately going to try now. Beautiful tarts!! I tried the peach–it was REALLY good!

Marthe June 9, 2009 at 1:06 pm

Great job on making your own puff pastry!! I'm so buying my own πŸ˜‰ Your tartlets look soooo cute!!

Si June 9, 2009 at 1:41 pm

Beautiful pastries! I'm sure 4 would not be enough for me…maybe 4 for me, 4 for my family.

Barbara Bakes June 9, 2009 at 1:46 pm

I really impressed with your puff pastry. It's so flaky and gorgeous!

chocolatechic June 9, 2009 at 1:58 pm

I just don't have the patience to make my own puff pastry.

I bet it tasted fabulous though.

vibi June 9, 2009 at 2:29 pm

WOW! I don't think I could even find the courage to make my own puff pastry! I'm darn too lazy… And from yours pics… I'd never have guessed it was homemade! wow! What puffing! What layering you got! …even better than store bought! Amazing!

Clivia June 9, 2009 at 3:01 pm

Your homemade puff pastry is truly phe-mom-enal! Well done. Lovely photos.

Pollyanna June 9, 2009 at 3:03 pm

I typed up a comment a second ago and it created an error. I still love your pastry! I keep reading you ladies making your own and now I must try it myself. Your layers look amazing and flaky! Yum!

Anne June 9, 2009 at 3:08 pm

Your pastry looks awesome! I need to try that… and some in season Utah peaches would put this dessert over the top.

Kim June 9, 2009 at 3:34 pm

Your puff pastry turned out perfect. Super puffy with lots of layers. I had a dud nectarine that wasn't totally ripe but the ripe peach one was fantastic. This will be a really good recipe as all the summer fruits start coming in.

Cynthia June 9, 2009 at 5:08 pm

Wow – your own puff pastry. I'm impressed. Also, like the fruit variation.

Manggy June 9, 2009 at 5:57 pm

I'm really impressed! I can't ever do puff pastry here (except if I crank up the A/C in my room, which I won't). I'm a big fan of baked apples, so bring on the gorgeousness! πŸ™‚

Jodie June 9, 2009 at 7:59 pm

Ooh, good call on making the puff pastry. I couldn't find it for less than $6 and I wasn't in the mood to spend that much! Yours look great!

Hornedfroggy June 9, 2009 at 8:34 pm

Thanks so much for baking with me this week! Awesome job on the puff pastry – I'm really impressed!! πŸ™‚

doughmesstic June 9, 2009 at 8:44 pm

Holllleeeee! Gorgeous! Now I want to make my own puff pastry too! If YOU say it is better than store bought, then it must be true. Looks fantastic. Now I can't wait until my peach trees are ripe – thanks for the ideas!

Tracey June 9, 2009 at 9:08 pm

Congratulations on making your own puff pastry! I really wanted to give it a try but it didn't happen this week. Your tartlets and your puff pastry look terrific! Nice job.

Pamela June 9, 2009 at 10:50 pm

Wow. Those look divine. Any leftovers? Can I lick the bowl?

tania June 10, 2009 at 12:38 am

I SO have to try this puff pastry recipe! My homemade pasty did not puff nicely like yours….sad!

But can I say how great yours look! Wonderful job Holly!

Charli June 10, 2009 at 3:30 am

You just sold me on making my own puff pastry next time! They look wonderful and it does sound like fun! I love playing with my food πŸ˜‰

lasinthekitchen June 10, 2009 at 4:05 am

Holy Cow! There's nothing rough about your puff pastry! It looks soo amazing! I would love a taste!

margot June 10, 2009 at 4:54 am

The homemade pastry looks so good and I like the generous sprinkling of brown sugar! Seriously, it seemed like we were getting off a little too easy this week.

Ria June 10, 2009 at 6:36 am

The rough puff pastry has come out perfect !! It looks super crunchy! πŸ™‚ Someday even I'll make my own puff pastry! πŸ˜‰

Di June 10, 2009 at 1:42 pm

Your tartlets look gorgeous, Holly! I made my own pastry too, from a different recipe. It definitely wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. And like you, I think I'll be doing it myself from now on. Especially since the recipe I used made over two pounds, so I have lots tucked away in my freezer. =)

John June 10, 2009 at 3:45 pm

It looks so delicious.
Thanks for sharing

foodcreate June 10, 2009 at 5:19 pm

Mouthwatering! Tartlets Perfect for Sunday Brunch!

Thanks for sharing your wonderful recipe:)

Join our growing food comunity and submit your heirloom recipe for all the world to share:)


Pamela June 10, 2009 at 5:41 pm

Beautiful, Holly. Someday I will try making my own pastry dough like that. But for now, I will continue to be amazed by you and all the others who made it! Well done!

TeaLady June 10, 2009 at 6:45 pm

Yeah, I remember making the danish and it wasn't tooooo hard. Thanks for the site for the rough puff.

Your tarts look amazing.

steph- whisk/spoon June 10, 2009 at 8:41 pm

good job on the puff– it made lovely tarts!

Vera June 11, 2009 at 3:23 am

Beautiful tartlets, Holly! And your puff pastry looks absolutely perfect!

Deborah June 11, 2009 at 3:37 am

You are amazing for making your own puff pastry! I want to try one day, but I'll have to find the courage first!

Katrina June 11, 2009 at 1:48 pm

You Rock making your own doesn't-look-very-rough puff pastry! Wow. And yours certainly looks like it rose up a lot higher than others I've seen. De-lish! This pastry scares me because I know I shouldn't eat all that butter and I LOVE puffy pastry. So, I filled little phyllo shells with fruit and called it my low-cal apple tartlets. Sigh. Someday I'll splurge!
I sure wish we were neighbors! πŸ˜‰

Michelle June 12, 2009 at 1:25 am

If you want the best peaches, make sure to get Michigan Peaches. They are in season Aug thru about the 1st week in Sep and then they are done. I love peaches and MI Peaches are the best I've ever had.

Leslie June 12, 2009 at 10:11 pm

I deliberately saved your post in my reader since every time I saw those whisper thin layers in your puff pastry, it made me happy. These are gorgeous tarts and a real push to get me to make my own again.

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