The Dessert Challenge is a new monthly challenge hosted by Sheryl at Lady Behind the Curtain. Each month she assigns two ingredients to be used in a dessert recipe. This month the ingredients were almond paste and pastry.
After giving it some thought I decided to be straight forward and use puff pastry with the almond paste to make palmiers. I had made some Crescent Nutella Jam Palmiers that I had previously posted, and decided that I would like to do the same this time.
This should have all been really simple, but it ended up being one of those cooking challenge things. I had a package of puff pastry, but it had been in the freezer for awhile so I purchased a new package, except I purchased puff pastry shells by accident. Living over 20 miles from the nearest grocery store that would carry puff paste, I couldn't jut pop there to pick up the correct thing. That was challenge #1, so I was back to using the puff pastry I already had in the freezer. Using WAY TOO MUCH JAM was challenge #2. I used 1/2 c. for 1 sheet of pastry, but had used only 2 T. in my crescent palmiers. Not sure why I didn’t go look at that recipe to see how much I used then. Challenge #3 happened when I didn’t quite understand the rolling directions so rolled the pastry too thin and did not fold it correctly.
The original recipe called for grating the almond paste and then mixing it in a food processor. That seemed to be double work to me, so I just sliced the almond paste into my Ninja food chopper, added the sugar and processed the two together. This worked very well and eliminated the grating. I don't like rolling out pastry directly on my counter so I rolled it out between two sheets of waxed paper. This worked fine. Although the instructions in the original recipe said to thaw the pastry sheets in the refrigerator, the package instructions said you could thaw the pastry at room temperature for 40 minutes so I just did that.
In the end, although the photos aren’t pretty, the palmiers were very good, and I will try this again, reducing the amount of jam. Now I am going to have to find something to make with those puff pastry shells.
Almond Jam Palmiers
adapted from an Odense Almond Paste recipe
1 (7 oz.) package Odense Almond Paste
1/2 c. sugar
1 pkg (17.03 oz.) frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed
2-3 T. jam for each pastry sheet (opt.)
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick foil. Remove pastry sheets from package and let set on counter for 10 minutes. Slice almond paste and put into the bowl of a food processor or food chopper along with the 1/2 c. sugar. Process until mixture is the texture of sand. (There will be about 2 c. of almond sugar.) Roll one sheet of pastry out between two sheets of waxed paper until it is 11x13-inches. Spread with jam if using. Sprinkle evenly with 1/2 cup almond sugar mixture. Fold short edges to center. Tightly roll folds so that they meet in the center. Sprinkle with sugar and lightly press down. Place in freezer 10 minutes. Repeat procedure with second sheet of puff pastry. Cut rolls into 1/2-inch slices. Dip one side in sugar and place on prepared baking sheet, sugar side up. Bake at 400 degrees 12-15 minutes until lightly browned. Store cookies in an air-tight container up to 3 days. Cookies may be frozen. Thaw and re-crisp in 300 degree oven for 5 minutes. Freeze almond sugar up to three months for another recipe. Makes about 32 to 36 palmiers.
April's challenge will be Caramel and Pretzels. You will find all the information about joining in the fun on Sheryl's Dessert Challenge page.
To see what other bloggers have made with almond paste and pastry, check out the links below.