Easy Churros

We plan our Super Bowl menu around our star appetizer, guacamole. This year, we ate our favorite Creamy Chicken and Greens with Roasted Poblano Tacos as our main dish. Of course, we needed a fitting dessert to end our meal.

I’ve wanted to try these churros since first seeing the recipe around Cinco de Mayo 2016. :/ Truth be told, they are not actually “true” churros… 😉 Yet, they are certainly a festive end to any Mexican-inspired menu. Perfect for our Super Bowl feast too.

This recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart Living. I cut the recipe in half and froze the prepared churros one day ahead prior to baking. We ate them dipped in warm dulce de leche- melted chocolate would also be delicious.

Yield: about 20 Churros

  • 8 ounces (1/2 box) all-butter puff pastry, thawed according to package directions
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • warm dulce de leche or melted chocolate, for serving, as desired
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees, preferably on convection.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out puff pastry into a 12-by-16-inch rectangle.
  3. Brush lightly with a beaten egg.
  4. Fold in half into a 6-by-16-inch rectangle; press out air bubbles, then cut crosswise into 1/2-by-6-inch strips.
  5. Twist into spirals, pressing ends to gently adhere.
  6. Place 1 inch apart on 2 parchment-lined baking sheets; freeze 30 minutes. (Can be made and frozen up to 1 day ahead.)
  7. Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until puffed and golden, 15 to 20 minutes.
  8. Combine sugar and cinnamon. While still hot, toss half of churros with half of sugar. Repeat with remaining churros and sugar.
  9. Serve immediately with warm dulce de leche or melted chocolate, as desired.

I’m bringing this dessert to share at Angie’s Fiesta Friday #162, co-hosted by Sarah @Tales from the Kitchen Shed and Liz @Spades, Spatulas, & Spoons. Enjoy!

Three Years Ago:

Four Years Ago:

Leek & Gruyère Tart with Prosciutto

I have a new favorite appetizer!! Perfect for any holiday or game day. It is quick to prepare and absolutely delicious- pretty too! This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Laura Chenel.

I made it to serve at our second annual Christmas concert where my kids and their friends perform for my friends, my husband, and me (aka their parents and grandparents!). This year we had many pianists, two cellists and a French horn player. The kids all did a great job, of course. It is quite a festive event! It was so warm this year we were able to have a glass of wine by the fire outside afterwards- so lovely!

I’m going to bring this deliciousness to share with my friends at my favorite blog party Fiesta Friday #102! (once again… better late than never!) This week two of my buddies are co-hosting the fun- Elaine @foodbod and Julie @Hostess at Heart. 🙂 Enjoy!!

Yield: Serves 4 to 6 as an appetizer

  • All-purpose flour, for dusting
  • 1/2 pound frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 medium leeks, white and tender green—halved lengthwise, thinly sliced crosswise and rinsed well
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 pound Gruyère cheese, coarsely shredded (2 cups)
  • 3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
  1. Preheat the oven to 475° preferably on convection.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry to a 13-inch square. Fold the corners in and lightly roll the pastry into a rough round. Transfer to a baking sheet; refrigerate.
  3. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the leeks and thyme, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes.
  4. Sprinkle half of the cheese over the pastry, leaving a 1-inch border. Spread the leeks over the cheese. Cover with the prosciutto; sprinkle on the remaining cheese. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Fold up the tart edge to form a rim and bake for 17 to 20 minutes, until golden and bubbling.
  6. Blot any excess fat with a paper towel. Cut the tart into wedges and serve.

One Year Ago:

Two Years Ago:

Three Years Ago:

Vegetable (& Chicken) Pot Pie with Puff Pastry Crust

IMG_6342

I have made this pot pie many, many times. I love the pearl onions, rosemary-infused broth based sauce, and puff pastry crust. In this version, I loaded it with CSA vegetables- including carrots, kohlrabi, and 5 baby bok choy! It was more of a vegetable pot pie, which I prefer. Tasty. This recipe was adapted from The New Basics Cookbook by Julee Rosso & Sheila Lukins.

Yield: Serves 8

  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 3 cups sliced carrots (1/4-inch thick rounds)
  • 1 large kohlrabi
  • 5 baby bok choy or other greens such as kale or chard
  • 4 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 cups pearl onions
  • 4 T unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 pounds cooked chicken breasts (about 2 large), cut into chunks or strips, about 4 cups
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon water
  1. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and cook. (I used grilled chicken this time but broiled, steamed or poached are also all options.) Cut into bite-sized cubes or strips.
  2. Bring the chicken stock to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the carrots, kohlrabi, and 1 rosemary sprig, and boil for 4 minutes. Drain, reserving the liquid, and set aside. Discard the rosemary.
  3. With the tip of a paring knife, make a small incision at the root end of each onion; be careful not to cut through completely so that the onion does not fall apart in cooking. Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil, add the onions, and cook until just tender, 10 minutes. Using a bamboo strainer, lift onions out of the boiling water, rinse under cold water, and peel. Set aside.
  4. Add the greens to the boiling water and cook for 1-2 minutes, until wilted. Drain and set aside.
  5. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the flour, and cook, whisking over medium-low heat, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the reserved carrot/kohlrabi liquid. Cook, whisking, until thickened, another 3 to 4 minutes. Add a sprig of rosemary, cover, and set aside to cool. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if necessary.
  6. Spread the chicken and vegetables evenly over the bottom of a deep 9×11 pan. Pour thickened sauce over the mixture and insert rosemary sprigs.
  7. Roll the thawed puff pastry to a rectangle large enough to seal over the baking dish. (I roll it between pieces of plastic wrap or parchment paper.)
  8. Whisk the egg and water together, and brush to outside rim of the baking dish with the egg wash. Drape the dough over the top and press the edges to seal. Brush the top with egg wash as well. Chill in the freezer for 20 minutes.
  9. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees.
  10. Transfer the baking dish to the oven, and bake until the pastry is puffed and well browned, 15 to 18 minutes. Serve immediately.

Asparagus Gruyere Tart

asparagus gruyere tart

This is my FAVORITE tart. It is easy to make and looks sophisticated and pretty. I made it the other day as a light lunch to celebrate a friend’s birthday. We ate it with a green salad. In the past, I have served it as an appetizer and have brought it for several potluck events. I use store-bought puff pastry. This recipe is from Everyday Food but I had to adjust the cooking times (posted below). Finely minced garlic could also be added to the pre-baked puff pastry before adding the cheese and asparagus.

  • Yield: Serves 4
  • Flour, for work surface
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry
  • 5 1/2 ounces (2 cups) Gruyere cheese, shredded (can substitute Emmentaler or Fontina cheese)
  • 1 1/2 pounds medium or thick asparagus
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a floured surface, roll the puff pastry into a 16-by-10-inch rectangle. Trim uneven edges. Place pastry on a baking sheet (I also use parchment paper). With a sharp knife, lightly score pastry dough 1 inch in from the edges to mark a rectangle. Using a fork, pierce dough inside the markings at 1/2-inch intervals. Bake until golden, about 10 minutes.
  2. Remove pastry shell from oven, and sprinkle with Gruyere. Trim the bottoms of the asparagus spears to fit crosswise inside the tart shell; arrange in a single layer over Gruyere, alternating ends and tips. Brush with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake until spears are tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

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