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  • 10 Habits of Professional Pastry Chefs
  • How to Make Apple Roses

    How to make Apple Roses

    Yield: 6 individual pastries

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 1 hour 5 minutes


    2 apples (pink lady, braeburn, or honeycrisp)
    Juice of half a lemon
    2 tablespoons brown sugar
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
    Flour, for dusting
    3 tablespoons apricot or strawberry preserves
    Powdered sugar, for dusting


    Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a standard muffin tin.

    Core the apples and slice in half. Using a very sharp knife or mandolin on the second setting, slice paper thin 1/8-inch slices and immediately sprinkle and toss in lemon juice prevent browning. Toss in the butter, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

    Microwave the slices for 45 seconds, or until soft and pliable enough to mold.

    Place the puff pastry on a lightly floured work surface. Roll out into a 9 by 12-inch rectangle. Cut six 2-inch wide strips of dough.

    In a small bowl, combine the preserves with 2 tablespoons of water. Microwave for 30 seconds if it was refrigerated. Spread evenly over each strip of dough. Arrange about 10 apple slices lengthwise in a straight line, overlapping slightly, on a strip of dough. Fold up the bottom part of the dough and begin tightly rolling the dough to form the rose shape. Press the edge to seal. Repeat for all the pies and place in the muffin tin.

    Make ahead: at this point the unbaked assembled roses can be covered and stored in the fridge for up to 1 day before baking as directed.

    Bake for 40 minutes, or until golden and cooked through. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired. Pastries are best served the day they are baked but can be stored in an airtight container and rewarmed in a 300°F oven for 5 to 10 minutes, or until warmed through and flaky again.

  • Blueberry Scones

    How to make Blueberry Scones

    Yield: 8 scones

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 40 minutes


    For the Scones

    1/2 cup milk (1% or higher)
    1/2 cup sour cream (full fat)
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/2 cup (1 stick) frozen butter, grated
    1 1/2 cup fresh blueberries (or frozen- do NOT thaw, use straight from the freezer)
    1/2 tablespoon butter, melted
    Coarse sugar (optional)

    For the Glaze:

    1 cup powdered sugar
    2-4 tablespoons cream, half-and-half, or milk
    1/4 teaspoon vanilla


    For the Scones:

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly grease.

    Mix milk and sour cream together in a small bowl and place in the fridge.

    In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add the grated frozen butter and mix in with a pastry cutter or two forks until the size of small peas. Drizzle the milk/sour cream in and stir until almost combined. Use a spatula to gently fold in the blueberries (take care not to break the blueberries or their color will bleed).

    Sprinkle work surface lightly with flour and dump out dough.  Form into a 9-10 inch disk. Cut the dough into 8 slices like a pizza. Place wedges of dough on prepared baking sheet, spacing them 2 inches apart. Brush the tops of dough with the melted butter and then sprinkle with coarse sugar.

    Bake for 16-20 minutes until tops are lightly golden. Remove scones from pan and cool on a wire rack.

    For the Glaze:

    While the scones cool, make the glaze by mixing powdered sugar with vanilla and 2 tablespoons cream/milk. Add more cream/milk if needed to get the desired consistency. Drizzle glaze over the scones that you will be eating immediately but wait until the scones are cooled to glaze the rest (it will just look cleaner/prettier).

  • Chocolate Eclairs

    How to make Chocolate Eclairs

    Yield: 10 to 12 eclairs

    Prep Time: 25 minutes

    Cook: 3 hours 30 minutes


    For the filling:

    2 cups whole milk
    6 large egg yolks
    2/3 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 cup cornstarch
    1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter
    1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

    For the pastry:

    1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter
    1/2 teaspoon fine salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    1 cup all-purpose flour
    4 large eggs, plus 1 for egg wash

    For the chocolate glaze:

    2 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
    1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
    1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2 teaspoons corn syrup (feel free to omit)


    To make the filling:

    Pour the milk into a medium saucepan set over medium heat. Warm just until the milk barely begins to steam, being careful not to boil.

    In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar until very well combined and light in color. Add the cornstarch and whisk vigorously until no lumps remain. Gradually whisk a ladle of the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture. Gradually whisk in the remaining hot milk mixture. Pour the egg-milk mixture back into the saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly, until thickened and barely boiling.

    Remove from heat and stir in the butter and vanilla. Strain into a clean bowl. Let cool slightly before pressing plastic wrap against the surface. Chill for at least 2 hours, or preferably overnight.

    For the pastry:

    Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a sheet pan with parchment or a nonstick mat.

    In a large saucepan set over medium-high heat, combine 1 cup water, the butter, salt, and sugar and bring to a rolling boil. Immediately remove from heat. Using a wooden spoon, stir in all the flour at once, stirring vigorously until combined. Return to heat and cook for 30 seconds, stirring.

    Scoop the mixture into a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or use a hand mixer. Turn to medium speed and add 3 of the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix until the dough is smooth and glossy and the eggs are thoroughly incorporated. The dough should be thick but fall into slow ribbons when the paddle is lifted. If the dough still clings to the beater, add the remaining 1 egg and beat until combined.

    Fit a pastry bag with a large plain tip and transfer the dough to the bag. Pipe 10 to 12 large hot-dog lengths of dough onto the prepared baking sheet, spacing about 2 inches apart. Whisk the remaining egg with 2 teaspoons water and brush over the éclairs. Smooth any bumps on the dough with your fingers.

    Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 375°F, rotate the pan, and continue baking for another 25 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Let cool completely on the baking sheet.

    To make the chocolate glaze:

    Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Microwave the cream just until boiling, about 30 seconds. Immediately pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir until melted. Add in the vanilla and corn syrup.

    To finish:

    Split each éclair shell in half lengthwise. Take the top shell and dip into the chocolate glaze, letting the excess drip off. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Using a spoon or pastry bag, fill the bottom shell with the pastry cream. Once the glaze has set on the top shells, place them on top of the pastry cream. Serve or store in the fridge, covered, for up to 2 days.

  • Homemade S’mores Pop Tarts

    How to make Homemade S’mores Pop Tarts

    Yield: 8 to 10 pop tarts

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook: 2 hours 25 minutes


    For the graham cracker pastry:

    1 3/4 cups (7.9 ounces or 224 grams) all-purpose flour
    9 graham crackers, finely ground (3/4 cup crumbs)
    1/2 teaspoon fine salt
    2 sticks (8 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
    2 tablespoons ice water, plus more if needed
    1 large egg

    For the s’mores filling:

    2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
    2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
    1/3 cup milk
    1/4 teaspoon fine salt
    1/2 cup (3 ounces) milk chocolate chips
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cubed
    1/2 cup marshmallow creme

    For the chocolate glaze:

    1/2 cup (3 ounces) milk chocolate chips
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter
    2 tablespoons corn syrup


    For the pastry:

    In the work bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, graham cracker crumbs, and salt. Add in the butter and pulse just until the mixture resembles coarse meal, with some larger chunks of butter remaining. Add the ice water and egg and pulse until it just comes together without being wet, sticky, or crumbly. If the dough doesn’t hold together when pinched between your fingers, add another tablespoon of water and pulse. You can also make the dough by hand with a pastry blender.

    Shape the dough into a disk and cover wrap with plastic wrap. Chill in the fridge until firm, at least 1 hour or up to 3 days. You can also freeze the dough, well wrapped in plastic, for up to 2 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight.

    For the filling:

    In a small saucepan, combine the cocoa powder, brown sugar, milk, salt, and chocolate. Set over medium heat and cook, stirring, until the chocolate is melted. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes or until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and add in the butter, stirring until melted and smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Mixture will thicken as it cools.

    To assemble:

    Remove the dough from the refrigerator and place between two sheets of parchment paper. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into a large rectangle about 1/8-inch thick. Cut the dough into even rectangles. Place 1 tablespoon of chocolate fudge and 1 tablespoon of marshmallow crème on a dough rectangle, leaving a 3/4-inch border. Top with another piece of dough, pressing out any air and using the tine of a fork to seal the edges. Repeat with the remaining dough rectangles and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Beat the egg with 1 tablespoon of water. Brush all over the tops of the pop tarts. Prick each tart a few times with a skewer or toothpick to allow steam to escape. Chill in the refrigerator for 20 minutes, or until the dough has stiffened slightly.

    Preheat the oven to 375°F. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown and puffed. Transfer to a wire rack to let cool completely.

    For the topping:

    While the pop tarts are cooling, place the glaze ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds. Stir and continue microwaving in 15-second bursts until melted. Let cool. Spoon the glaze over the cooled pop tarts and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

  • Homemade Pop Tarts

    How to make Homemade Pop Tarts

    Yield: 12 pop tarts

    Prep Time: 5 minutes

    Cook: 25 minutes

    Fill these with whatever you like!


    3 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon salt
    2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/2 cup cold water
    Filling of your choice: Nutella, jam, fruit puree, peanut butter, marshmallow fluff, etc.
    1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
    1 teaspoon coconut oil or vegetable oil


    Preheat the oven to 450°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

    In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Add chunks of the butter and mix with a pastry blender or your fingers until the mixture is crumbly. Gradually add the water until the mixture is moistened and a dough forms. Place the dough in between two large sheets of parchment or plastic wrap and roll out into an 1/8-inch thickness, using the parchment or plastic to prevent sticking.

    Cut the dough into rectangles. Place a heaping tablespoon of filling in the center of half of the rectangles. Cover the filling with another dough rectangle and seal the edges by crimping with the back of a fork.

    Bake the pop tarts for 7 to 8 minutes. Cool completely.

    Place the chocolate chips and oil in a small microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until melted and smooth. Pour the melted chocolate into a small ziptop bag, snip off a small corner, and pipe the chocolate onto the cooled pop tarts. Let the chocolate set, about 5 to 10 minutes, before serving or storing in an airtight container.

    Adapted from My Kitchen Addiction

  • Rosemary Cheese Straws

    How to make Rosemary Cheese Straws


    2 sheets puff pastry, defrosted overnight in the refrigerator
    1 large egg
    1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
    1 cup freshly grated white cheddar cheese
    2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    Freshly ground black pepper


    Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

    Roll out each puff pastry sheet on a lightly floured work surface into a 10x12-inch size. Beat egg with 1 tablespoon of water and brush onto the surface of the pastry.

    In a small bowl combine cheeses, rosemary, salt, and a pinch of pepper. Sprinkle mixture evenly over pastry sheets. Gently press mixture into sheets. Slice sheets into thin strips using a pizza wheel or floured knife. Twist each strip and lay on prepared baking sheets.

    Bake 10-15 minutes, until browned and puffed. Turn each straw and bake for another 2 minutes. Cool and serve at room temperature.

  • White Chocolate & Berries Dessert Pastries

    How to make White Chocolate & Berries Dessert Pastries

    Yield: Serves 6

    Cook: 3 hours

    Note: for best results, use the highest quality chocolate and puff pastry you can find and afford. I like E. Guittard's white chocolate baking wafers and Trader Joe's all-butter puff pastry.


    For white chocolate filling:

    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 2 tablespoons cornstarch or 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    • 2 cups whole milk
    • 4 egg yolks, lightly beaten
    • 4 ounces high-quality white chocolate, chopped
    • 2 teaspoons butter

    For assembling:

    • 1/2 of a 17.3 ounce package frozen puff pastry (1 sheet), thawed
    • 2 cups fresh berries, such as raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries


    To make white chocolate filling:

    Whisk together sugar, cornstarch, and milk in a medium heavy saucepan. Cook and stir on medium heat until bubbly. Cook and stir for 2 minutes more, until thickened. Remove saucepan from heat. Gradually stir half of the milk mixture into the beaten egg yolks to temper. Return egg yolk mixture back to saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil; reduce heat. Cook and stir for 2 minutes more.

    Remove saucepan from heat; add white chocolate and butter, stirring until melted and smooth. Pour filling into a medium bowl and cover the surface with plastic wrap. Chill for at least two hours, or up to 24 hours in the fridge (refrain from stirring during chilling).

    To assemble pastry:

    Preheat oven to 425 degrees. On a lightly floured surface unfold the thawed puff pastry. Using a sharp knife, cut along creases; halve each strip crosswise to make a total of 6 rectangles. Transfer rectangles to an ungreased baking sheet. Bake about 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet; cool on a wire rack.

    Split pastry rectangles in half horizontally. Place pastry bottoms on dessert plates. Spoon filling and berries over pastry bottoms. Top with pastry tops. If desired, cover and chill for up to 1 hour.

    From Better Homes & Gardens

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