Sunday, September 30, 2012

Cream Horns

                                                   Cream Horns
Uh-Oh, I found an easier way to make puff pastry! This pastry is the main component in most of my favorite desserts. I can feel my derriere, expanding. I'm going to try this technique on croissants too. Instead of using a block of butter, the butter is softened and whipped, then refrigerated. I found the recipe at An American Housewife. She posted, that you could use a combination of butter and shortening. I decided to experiment, and whip it together. This made it so much easier to work with, than the recipe I've always used.
A co-worker once called cream horns "Cholesterol sticks" Hahaha, I know a lot of cooks, don't like to use shortening, but a few years ago (Most) of the manufacturers reformulated their products. The kind I use, has no trans fats, no cholesterol, 4g saturated fat (butter has 51g) and 7g of the good fat (polyunsaturated) per tablespoon. It's not as if my family, will let me eat the whole batch, myself...Darn It!
Ahh... I can still remember the good ol' days when nobody liked my black walnut ice cream. The whole carton was mine, to leisurely savor. Then somebody actually tried it, now I'm lucky if I get any.

For the pastry:
3cups flour
1/2tsp. salt
1cup ice water
2 egg yolks
1cup softened real butter
1cup all vegetable shortening ( you can use 2 cups of butter, instead)

Cream together the butter and shortening, with an electric mixer, until fluffy. Refrigerate at least, one hour.
Meanwhile, whisk together, the flour and salt.
Whisk together the egg yolks and ice water.
Using a fork, stir the egg mixture, into the flour mixture, until it forms a ball. It should be rough and shaggy looking, Don't knead! Sprinkle a little flour, on a plate. set the dough, on the plate. Cover and refrigerate one hour.

{After an hour, dust a rolling surface, with flour, roll the dough into an 1/8-inch thick, rectangle. Spread 1/2-cup of the butter mixture on the center of the dough. Fold the dough, over the butter, overlapping the edges.This dough can get a bit sticky, just smooth a little flour over the surface. Sprinkle a little flour, on a plate. set the dough, on the plate. Cover and refrigerate one hour.}
^Repeat the steps in parentheses, three more times, waiting an hour between.

 After the last repetition, roll the dough, and refold, twice more. Set the dough on a floured plate, cover and chill overnight.

The next day, Preheat the oven t 375*F.
Divide the dough into three pieces.
Remove one piece, (refrigerate the rest). Roll it 1/8-inch thick.
Cut into strips about 12" or 15" inches, in length and up to, 1-inch wide.
Spray your aluminum forms, or  Make you own forms.
Wind each strip around a form, overlapping, a bit. Roll them in sugar.
Place on a lightly greased cookie sheet. (one with sides, there will be a little melted butter.)
Bake until lightly golden. (About 15 minutes, but this may vary.) You have to let them cool on the form. Twist them off the form and fill.

Cream Horn Filling:
1cup all vegetable shortening
1cup real butter
4cups confectioner's sugar
2-4tsp. vanilla
3/4-cup marshmallow creme (you could omit this)
Cream together, the shortening and butter.
Beat in the sugar gradually, then the marshmallow creme and vanilla.
Beat well until it's smooth like whipped cream. Fill the cooled pastries, using a pastry bag.

Chill the dough for an hour. Roll it into an 1/8-thick rectangle. Spread 1/2-cup of the butter, in the center.

                                  Fold the edges over the butter.

Place it on a floured plate, cover and chill, for one hour. Repeat three more times, until you use all of the butter. After the last repetition, roll and fold two more times. Chill overnight.

The next day, cut the dough into three pieces. Roll one piece 1/8- inch rectangle that is 12-14-inches long. Using a pizza cutter, cut it into 1/2 to 1-inch strips.
Starting at one end, wrap one strip round a form, overlapping slightly. Roll it in sugar, and place it on a cookie sheet. Bake until lightly browned.

Allow them to cool completely, on the form. Then gently grasp the pastry, with one hand. With the other hand, twist the form, (don't pull, yet) until the form spins freely, then twist it out of the pastry. Fill.

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