Sunday, December 17, 2006

Flavored Pastry Inspiration

Do you like to experiment in the kitchen? I do! I had a seat mate on a flight back to Paris who liked to cook. He quizzed me about what I cook to Impress a Guest. I had to answer that I just don't cook like that anymore. When people come over I'm usually inspired to try something new, and feeling confident in my friendships, I know the telephone number of our little Pizza place if the meal falls flat!

I taught a class in Pastry Making a few years ago. This was a hands-on class and one of my favorite classes to teach, btw. I just recently received an eMail along with some photos from a gal who took that got me excited to get my hands back in the dough again! I've blogged about my Tapenade Pastry and my Chocolate Dough......and with Clay arriving in the early morning, I love to serve up a Tart for lunch. You can make them in advance and rewarm gently to welcome a loved one back to France!

I decided to try something new, and create a new flavor for my Flavored Pastry. This brand of Pesto called Sacla has some great flavor combos, and the little jars can be added to most sauces, you can top a pizza, slap on a wrap sandwich, they are great to keep in your cupboard! I replaced the little jar of Tapenade with this olive and tomato pesto, thinking it would be a great flavored dough for my tart.

click on the photo for a larger look

You can see the color and the little bits of black olive that dot the dough. It was a pleasure to roll out and when blind baked it filled the house of lovely smells of the Mediterranean. Try it!

Do you see my new toy? The Matfer nylon rolling pin! First mentioned by "Martha" who was working with Maury Rubin of City Bakery fame, then I saw it mentioned again in Chow's Gift Guide. Nice weight and the dough just glides beneath it!

This Caramalized Onion and Spinach tart with a Marscapone Bleu Cheese is rich and delish! I think the dough recipe is a keeper!

And as someone sleeps away the jet-lag, my house is filled with love and lots of cooking!


Cindy said...

That definetely looks and sound good !

Tanna said...

Blue cheese and spinach - that is a great combo. Really like the olives in the dough!

Melissa said...

Hi Cindy.....thanks! It tasted really great, a keeper! Enjoy the Holiday Season!

Tanna, the olives gave a nice visual, but the taste of that dough was really could taste the sun-dried tomato in the pesto sauce!
Happy Holidays!

Pamela Poole said...

Hi. I'm a fellow Paris blogger. I made chocolate chip cookies yesterday, an American recipe, substituting vergeoise for brown sugar. They came out flat and halfway between candy and cookies. Good, but not right. I'm pretty sure the vergeoise was the culprit. Any suggestions? Thanks! Pam

Melissa said...

Hi Pamela!
I took a look at your blog and I'm going to be checking in on you!
Listen, I'm sure your sugar was the culprit! Can you get to 'Thanksgiving' or the Real McCoy? Pick up a sack of good old sticky brown sugar, that should do the trick!
Bonne Annee!

Pamela Poole said...

Hi Melissa. Yes, I've been to McCoy's. I'll do that next time! Thanks! Pam

Anonymous said...

Hi there - I love the sound of your flavored doughs, but I can't find any other posts about this or recipes, are they on your blog? Maybe I'm just not looking in the right places.

What a great set of ideas. I'm messing around with a spinach shortcrust dough at the moment which has a wonderful color.

Thanks, Christine