Tuesday, June 28, 2011

En Route to En Croute

En Croute is any food that is wrapped in a pastry and baked. After I pre-made my shortcrust pastry I am en route to making my Salmon En Croute!

After you've prepared the pastry, this recipe takes almost no time to prepare, it's very easy and straight forward. I got this from Sorted Food Website. I discovered them in YouTube where they make really great , clear, modern and funny videos.

Here is just what I used, MY edited version:

1 shortcrust pastry
2 salmon fillet portions, approx 175g each
4 tbsp of cream cheese
handful of boiled and dried spinach
1 egg
bunch of fresh asparagus for garnish

Originally, the recipe calls for ready to buy frozen puff pastry, where you can buy in Santi's here in Manila, but since I wanted to challenge myself, I decided to make my own Shortcrust Pastry.

After rolling out the dough, to the thickness of maybe a 5 peso coin, then let it rest again in the ref.

Prepare some room temperature cream cheese, mine came right out from the ref so I popped it in the microwave for 30 seconds, mixed it to check if it's soft enough, then again for 30 seconds.

I have stirfried the spinach with some crushed garlic then drained them REALLY DRY-- hand-squeezed to perfection haha. After which, I chopped it into pieces then mixed vigorously with the cream cheese until well blended, salt and pepper to taste.

Take out the rolled out shortcrust pastry again then place a big spoonful of spinach mixture on top then place a nice piece salmon (make sure to pat dry with paper towel) on top of it.

Crack and beat 1 egg on a separate bowl, then brush it on the edges of the pastry to use as adhesive; then flip over the other side of pastry then pinch the sides to seal. Score a plaid pattern on top for aesthetic purposed; then brush on the top some egg wash to give the crust some gloss. Put it back in the ref.

Make sure your oven has been pre-heating for a while (at least 30 minutes) at 250°C, then pop in the cold Salmon En Croute into the oven then bake until brown. According to my pastry chef and good friend Jordan, ensuring HOT oven and COLD pastry will ensure the pasty puff.

He also says to make sure that you get to know your oven. How long it'll take for it to heat up etc etc. In my case, i had to do 3 pcs of en croute at a time, so I had to crank up my oven really high then put them in; and after finishing a batch of 3, i had to leave it again

to preheat for a few more minutes, before I put in the next batch of cold pastry. Bake until brown.

I ended up baking the pastry for about 30 minutes, the salmon was flaky and not over-cooked as I expected it to be. Since it was inside the pastry, it was steamed. Garnished it with a asparagus and we were good to go.

Bon Appetite!

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