Apparently now that I’m on summer break, my brain thinks I’m a morning person? I kid you not, all school year I was a worthless mess before 10 am. This morning, I went grocery shopping and made these bad boys already and its not even 8 yet. Braided puff pastry before noon? Who am I?
I am extremely fortunate that I got hired right out of college into this little community. I thought I would spend a year or two here before moving on to something bigger. Turns out, I love it here. Part of that is due to the amazing music teachers I get to work with. Because we are all at different grades and schools, it’s not often we get to see each other. So we make it happen when we can. We decided last night we are having a meeting at 10 this morning. Normally when we get together, we all bring sugary snacks and margaritas. I didn’t figure most of us would want to get boozed up on a Thursday morning, so I decided to try a quick pastry.
One of these days (hopefully soon) I’m going to try to gather the patience to make real, French, puff pastry dough from scratch. Nothing makes me happier than a chocolate-filled puff pastry. Puff pastries are beautiful with their flaky layers, and oh-so-buttery-deliciousness. But I didn’t have time to let the dough sit in the refrigerator for an hour at a time for four hours. So I bought the frozen stuff, and it turned out just fine. Better than just fine, really. They were DIVINE!
Now puff pastry can be made into all sorts of pretty little shapes. I decided to just go with a simple braided log so we can easily just cut and serve.
Here’s how I did it:
First, you have to let the dough thaw for about 40 minutes. I hadn’t eaten breakfast or had my coffee before I went to the store, so I let it thaw while I took care of that. Once it is fully thawed, lay it out on a cookie sheet and preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
The dough comes folded in three sections. Spread some Nutella in the middle with the back of a spoon. There will likely be a good blob of Nutella stuck to the spoon when you are finished. You probably need to lick it off of there to make it easier to wash the spoon. Just sayin’.
Cut diagonal lines on each side using a butter knife. Make sure the cuts line up on either side for a symmetrical braid. At this point, I remembered I bought some strawberries at the store, so I added some strawberry slices on top of the Nutella. Mmmmmmm. Good choice.
Bring the cut strips across the middle, alternating sides. This is what creates the braided look. At this point, I sprinkled some powdered sugar on top. Just cause I wanted some extra sweetness. I made a second braid using canned cherry pie filling. I may have gotten it a little full…
Now, you just have to bake it! I ended up baking mine for about 17-18 minutes. But I’m at a super high altitude, so you might want to start with 10-15 minutes.
We ate all but two pieces. I may have eaten them for lunch…
Just look how pretty they were in this cute little pan I have!
Now for real. Next time you need an easy breakfast, or even dessert, pull out some puff pastry dough. You can use the fillings I used, or get creative. Next time, I want to use some cream cheese! Mmmmmm… I should have bought a few extra boxes of dough.
- Frozen Puff Pastry Dough
- Strawberries, washed and sliced, about 3 per braid
- Powdered Sugar, if desired
- Canned Cherry Pie Filling, or other desired ingredients
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- 1. Thaw the dough for about 40 minutes. Unfold dough and lay it flat on a cookie sheet.
- 2. Spread Nutella in the middle section only. Add sliced strawberries on top.
- 3. Cut diagonal lines into the dough on either side of the Nutella. Be sure to cut the same number of times on each side.
- 4. Pull the strips over the Nutella and strawberries, alternating sides to create the braid pattern.
- 5. Sprinkle powdered sugar on top, if desired.
- 6. Repeat steps to create another Nutella and Strawberry braid, or use cherry pie filling or any other ingredients you have on hand to use the other section of frozen dough.
- 7. Bake for 10-17 minutes at 400 degrees.