I have a confession to make. I have never worked with puff pastry and I have never made homemade jam. I have another confession to make-- I tend to over think things, over research things and still I let my fear of failure paralyze me. It's that perfectionist in me that I struggle against. That's my excuse for waiting all these years to work with puff pastry and to make jam.
Whew! I feel much better, now. For weeks, I've been seeing all kinds blogs, displaying a variety of delicious looking puff pastry concoctions. I finally decided to take out the box of Trader Joe's puff pastry that I had in my freezer for weeks... maybe months!
I had a bowl of peaches that was going to become peach preserves-- like about ten of them (on sale for less than $1.00 a pound). By Friday, I noticed I was down to four peaches. My husband spotted them, and figured they were fair game. So much for making preserves... so I figured now was the time to make peach turnovers.
After researching recipes (see what I mean?) I cut a small "x" at the bottom of each peach and blanched them for about 3 minutes (the peaches were just turning ripe).
Then, into an ice bath for a few minutes. The skins slipped right off!After slicing them, I put them into a container for Sunday morning.
This morning, I removed the puff pastry and read the instructions for the umpteenth time. I preheated the oven to 400F.
The peaches got about 1/4 cup of sugar, some lemon juice and a scant 1/4 cup of tapioca.
Once I cut the turnovers into 8 squares, it was time to fill them. Hmmmm, I barely used the peaches!I did an egg wash and sprinkled some raw turbinado sugar and placed them on parchment paper. Not fancy, but it's my first time...
15 minutes later, these were ready.
Wow! So easy and so delicious-- and a lot less expensive than the ones my son buys for $1.75 each. The rest of the peach filling will probably become cobbler or pie-- tomorrow. I had another project on my mind. So, today, I conquered my fear of puff pastry. Silly me-- it's as easy as 1-2-3. I can already imagine the possibilities-- savory meals and strudels. Yummy!
Saturday night, I bought 1/2 flat of fresh olallieberries from my neighborhood farm stand "The Farm". $10.00 made it a sweet deal, so I unpacked my canning kit I ordered from Amazon.com. For $50.00 and some shipping, it had everything I needed to learn how to can-- pot, jar, lids, and all the doo-dads and instructions. I read this a half dozen times, I tell you. I was ready!
I'm not going to post the recipe, because I haven't tasted the jam at the cooled stage. What I will tell you is that I'm shocked at how much sugar goes into jam! Wow!
I did the plate test (per the book) and I think that the berries reached the gel stage I wanted.
I boiled those babies and, as I write, I can hear the "pop" of each jar. Yes!!
As for homemade jam... it might not be cheaper than store bought. In fact, I think by the time I burned up fossil fuel with my gas stove, and my investment, I am breaking even. The point is, I know I made this myself. Plus, I am getting ready to learn how to can my own tomatoes, which are looking mighty promising-- if the sunshine will stick around. It finally came out today.
Last, but not least-- Happy Father's Day! My husband is step dad to my son, but he deserves recognition for how patient and good-hearted he is to my 20 year old boy.
I have a fantastic special dinner planned for these babies! Aren't these rib eyes gorgeous? You bet...and so is the menu I'm making that I watched by recording this Food Network Chef:
Stay tuned... it's going to be "fantastic". I know it!
A printable recipe card is at the end of this post. If you can't see it (just keep scrolling down), click here to view it on Key Ingredient.