Monday, December 24, 2012

Chocolate Puff Pastry Bites

chocolate puff pastry bites
Puff pastry has to be one of the seven wonders of the culinary world. For me at least, it’s right up there with caramelizing sugar and emulsions. I know how it works, I understand the science, but doggonit if it doesn’t make my head shake when I watch the magic happen.

chocolate puff pastry bites

In a nutshell, puff pastry is made by folding the buttery dough over and over and over onto itself so when its baked, it expands like a blowfish on steroids. Traditionally, it was time-consuming to make, but now we have all these shortcuts and even frozen versions, which I hate to admit, I LOVE to use.  When unexpected company drops by to say hello, one can take a thawed sheet of puff pastry, shove in some chocolate chips, cover with coconut flakes and bake it all in the oven for quick sweet appetizer or mini dessert.

chocolate puff pastry bites

These little puffs start out looking like ravioli, but they rise (and rise) to yield little flaky cubes with melty chocolate centers. By all means, experiment – I imagine adding a little strawberry jam or orange marmalade to the mix wouldn’t hurt. Using your own puff pastry instead of buying it frozen would up the awesomness of the dish, but there’s nothing wrong with the pre-made frozen kind, especially if you’re pressed for time.

Yield: 18 pieces

  • 1 sheet puff pastry dough, thawed
  • 1/2 cup bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • Garnish: Powdered sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Cut puff pastry sheet into thirds, then cut each sheet into 6 rectangles.

2. Make a small pile of chocolate chips on one side of a puff pastry rectangle. Fold other side over chocolate chips and seal by pressing fork tines onto the edges. It should look like a little piece of ravioli. Place on a nonstick cookie sheet, or a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper. Repeat with remaining ingredients.

3. Brush the tops of the puffs with melted butter, 

and press a bit of flaked coconut onto each square.

4. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until coconut is browned and puff pastry squares are a pale golden color. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes. Sift a little powdered sugar over the top before serving. Serve warm at High Tea, or any other time during the day, with a hot cup of black tea or a tall glass of cold milk.

chocolate puff pastry bites

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