Puff pastry

Puff pastry

By
From
Baking
Makes
18 cm rounds
Photographer
Vanessa Levis

Use for fine pastries where maximum delicacy and high, even rising are required. Puff pastry is mostly eaten as a sweet little cake or puff, but when grated good cheese is added, as for gougères, you have a perfect savoury bite to accompany red wine.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
250g plain flour
250g butter, chilled
1/2-2/3 cup iced water
a squeeze of lemon juice

Method

  1. Sift the flour into a mixing bowl, add 30 g of the butter, and rub into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add the water mixed with the lemon juice and stir with a knife, then gather the dough together with your fingers. Place on a lightly floured surface, knead lightly and shape into a square pat. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour. At the same time, chill the remaining butter.
  2. Remove the chilled dough and butter from the refrigerator. Put the butter into a loose plastic bag and beat it with a rolling pin to make it pliable, remove from the bag and then use a floured rolling pin roll it into a 15 cm square. The butter and dough should both be firm and of the same consistency.
  3. Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough to a 25 cm square, pulling out the corners to make a neat shape. Place the butter diagonally on the centre of the dough and fold the four dough corners in, slightly overlapping, to make an envelope of dough completely enclosing the butter.
  4. Flour the work surface and rolling pin and roll the dough and butter to a rectangle three times as long as it is wide, and 1 cm thick. Fold the bottom third up and the top third down and seal the edges by pressing lightly with the rolling pin. This is the first fold.
  5. Turn the dough round at right angles so that the top flap is to your right, as if it were a book. Roll as before to a rectangle three times as long as it is wide and about 5 mm thick. Fold into three as before, place in a plastic bag and chill for about 30 minutes until firm but not hard. The dough has now had two folds.
  6. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll and fold it twice more in the same manner. Chill again for about 30 minutes.
  7. Roll and fold twice more (the dough has now had six folds). Chill again for 30 minutes, and the dough is ready to use. Roll out and cut as desired, then chill again for 30 minutes before baking. Unless otherwise indicated, bake puff pastry in a preheated 230°C oven.
Tags:
baking
bakery
margaret
fulton
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