Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Cherry Turnovers

I wanted to make something special for a family/church friends party last weekend. I looked through my recipes for a qualifying dessert. Something different was on my mind--and something with a touch of fall.

I finally found a recipe I cut out from Everyday Food last year. The recipe looked easy enough--but it used puff pastry, something I had never worked with before. I found the recipe about six hours before I had to attend the party--and I still had to do the shopping.

It took me two stores to find the puff pastry--and then it was frozen. I was supposed to thaw the pastry for 30-40 minutes before starting and then roll it out into a larger rectangle still folded--but I didn't have time and my rolling pin doesn't respect me. So I skipped that step. The only thing this did was cause the turnovers to be bigger (what's the harm in that?!). Everyone tried to be good and take only half, but they always went back for another one later.

These turnovers were amazing. My original plan was to make some cherry and some apple, but lack of time and interest in a second dessert choice for non-cherry lovers changed my mind. The dessert was easy to make, despite the newness of the puff pastry. I will gladly make these for any party!

Cherry Turnovers
1 box (17.25oz, 2 sheets) frozen puff pastry (Pepperidge Farm has some near the pie crust in the freezer section)
3T flour, plus more for dusting
1 bag (12oz) frozen cherries (I recommend breaking these down a little with a fork when you mix them with the sugar)
1/3cup sugar
1T lemon juice
1 large egg yolk mixed with 2T water (for egg wash)
2 to 3T Raw sugar (also known as sanding sugar or finishing sugar) *I used raw sugar and I think it made a nice difference in look--use more than you expect
Small bowl of water and pastry brush or small rubber spatula

-When you decide to make the recipe, start thawing the puff pastry.
-In a medium bowl combine cherries, flour, granulated sugar, and lemon juice; toss to coat.
-Unfold one sheet of puff pastry on a lightly floured board or table.
-Mix together the yolk and water for the egg wash and set aside
-Preheat the oven to 375
-Cut into 9 equal squares with a sharp knife (really you can cut into any size you want, but this was the easiest for me--just make sure that between the two sheets you end with an even number)
-Mound the cherries into the center of one square leaving a border on each side. Brush the edge with water.
-Cover the first square with another square and press down the edges to stick. Use a floured fork to crimp the edges.
-Set aside on a cookie sheet (you may want to spray this sheet, I lost a little of the pastry to the pan)
-Repeat the process until you have made all the turnovers.
-Brush the tops of the pastry with the egg wash and sprinkle with raw sugar (apparently if you let the egg wash drip too much the pastry won't puff)
-Use a sharp knife to cut 3-4 slits in the top of each
-Bake for 30-40 minutes until golden brown and filling is bubbling

Serve warm, or at room temperature - they are equally as delicious!

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