Pesto Apricot Brie En Croute — The Daring Kitchen Cooks May 2013 Challenge

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May 15, 2013 by Joanne T Ferguson

IMG_2960My name is Joanne and I am not a baker! lol

By now, I guess I can say I am a “novice” baker and KNOW one day I might be ready for Baking and Pastry 102! πŸ˜‰

As you KNOW by now, I am always up for a “challenge” and this month’s Cook’s Challenge was fun indeed.

When Monkey Queen from Don’t Make Me Call My Flying Monkeys (love the name of her site) “issued” the challenge to make something En Croute via The Daring Kitchen, I was “intrigued.” Very HappyVery Happy

“En Croute?”, I “hear you say? Remember, I CAN “still” hear you through the computer screen! πŸ˜‰

En Croute … “is a food that has been wrapped in pastry dough and baked in an oven. You can find lots of foods to wrap; salmon, pork, vegetables and fruit, with beef wellington being the most decadent and well known.”

Monkey Queen provided “three different recipes with three different difficulty levels.

These recipes are for guidance or suggestions, but we are always welcomed to create our own recipes and come up with something unique.

When I read that there were three different difficulty levels, ALL I could think of was I was going to have THREE different kitchen judges sitting in my kitchen holding up cards judging me on a score of ten.

I think you KNOW by now, I have a VERY VIVID food imagination!

But my dreams and imaginations SEEM….SO REAL! ShockedShocked

My initial thinking (after my fear of the kitchen judges dream lol) was to keep it simple.

Pastry, baked, cheese…but then (as my mind DOES do), I thought mmmmmmm, what happens if I stuff the cheese and add fruit or nuts too!

VOILA! Pesto, dried apricots, forgot the ground walnuts too! Here is my En Croute I created that I hope I can “inspire” people to do!

I opened my What’s On The List folder, WHAT did I see? My ABSOLUTE FAVORITE Puff Pastry recipe! Very HappyVery Happy

When last I made Pear Jam and Brie Puff Pastry Bites, I remember I commented:
I have made Puff Pastry from scratch before, but may I say this is β€œTHE BEST” puff pastry I have β€œever” made, TRUE! The fact the recipe contains NO SUGAR is a bonus, making it A LOT healthier too!

The same was true today! I wanted to re-thank Pati from Pati’s Mexican Table for her from Pati’s Hojaldre (Puff Pastry) that “magically” came my way! πŸ˜‰

Her recipe is SO easy to do; SO easy to follow!

NOTE
I made the recipe as follows and used half; placing the other half in the freezer for a future date.

Ingredients
2 2/3 cups all purpose flour, sifted, plus more for rolling dough
1/4 pound (340 grams) very cold butter, cut into cubes
1/4 teaspoons salt
3/4 very cold water

THAT’S IT! πŸ˜‰

In a food processor, place flour and salt. Add butter and pulse a couple of times, until the butter is incorporated. (about the size of a pea)

Slowly pour in cold water while pulsing until a very crumbly dough is formed.

Turn dough onto a clean, lightly floured workspace and gently push it together with your hands — do NOT knead!

With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll out dough into a roughly looking triangle.

Use your hands to fold the two bottom tips inward and the top down, like an envelope.

Turn dough a quarter-turn clockwise and roll out, into a rectangle shape.

Fold the two ends lengthwise into the middle to meet.

Fold the dough in half across.

Turn the dough another quarter turn clockwise and repeat both the triangle and rectangle steps above.

Wrap puff pasty in plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use. Refrigerate for at least 45 minutes.

THAT’S IT! πŸ˜‰

“What did you stuff it with?”, I “hear” you say? πŸ˜‰

Ingredients
1/4 cup Barilla Pesto alla Genovese
1/4 cup dried apricots, slightly pulsed

NOTE
Forgot the 1/4 cup ground walnuts, but in the end, it did not need it, so “WHEW!” πŸ˜‰
IMG_2954

Cut brie in half. (I used King Island Ash Brie; (one of my favorites); feel free to use whatever cheese you have on hand πŸ˜‰ )

Fill with above ingredients. Close lid; press down.

Hint and Tip
I did wipe the sides to make sure the filling stayed in.

When you do wrap the Pesto Apricot Brie En Croute, make sure there are no holes or some of the “beautiful” baked cheese will “melt” out! πŸ˜‰

Ingredients
1 egg
1 tablespoon water

Beat above; set aside.

Unfold pastry onto a “lightly” floured surface.

Roll pastry into a 14 inch square. (I used a ruler πŸ˜‰ )

NOTE
Depending on the size of your brie or cheese, you “may” need to do a bit of trimming.

With a pastry brush, egg wash entire pastry surface.

Fold the bottom end of the pastry up to cover cheese.

Fold the top end of the pastry up to the opposite end; Trim sides. (to about 2 inches)

Hint and Tip
You do not have to be THAT delicate with the pastry, BUT you want to make sure you are not THAT rough that you will make any holes. πŸ˜‰

Bring both sides of the pastry up and pull “gently”; using egg wash to help seal.

I then used the remaining egg wash to make sure the entire surface of the Pesto Apricot Brie En Croute was covered.

If you want to be fancy and use up extra pastry, you can create any design of your choice.

Pre heat oven to 200C. (400F)

Place Pesto Apricot Brie En Croute on an oil sprayed flat tray.

Bake 25 minutes or until lightly gold brown.

I happen to like bows and was the first time I made En Croute with a Pastry Bow too! πŸ™‚
I am VERY proud today of you know who! Very HappyVery HappyVery Happy

“What did it look like inside?” I hear you say?Β πŸ˜‰

It might not LOOK pretty, but I can tell you it DEFINITELY was warm, melted, cheesy, YUM…En Croute! πŸ˜‰

IMG_2961What a GREAT The Daring Kitchen Cooks May 2013 Challenge, I TOTALLY did enjoy!

I SO hope I can (in turn) to “inspire” YOU to bake En Croute too!

What foods or ingredients would YOU like to see wrapped in pastry?

Always love reading comments, so why add yours …would LOVE to “hear” when YOU do say! Very Happy

25 thoughts on “Pesto Apricot Brie En Croute — The Daring Kitchen Cooks May 2013 Challenge

  1. […] you remember Pesto Apricot Brie En Croute and Sugarless Pear Jam and Brie Pastry Bites On A Stick […]

  2. babso2you says:

    This looks amazing! I have to try this one!

  3. Claudia says:

    That is a fabulous combination of flavors! And I have copied that puff pastry recipe, as previously they have seemed too tricky. Did you leave the waxy covering on the brie, or what was that?

    • Thanks Claudia! Trust me if I can make this pastry (as I consider myself a non baker) ANYONE can make it! Pati’s recipe is WONDERFUL and I never thought puff pastry I would EVER be able to do, TRUE!
      Re the Ash Brie…I took it out of the paper and then cut it horizontally in half before filling; do not overfill πŸ™‚
      Here is a photo of the brie (with the rind on) but cut differently. Hope this helps! Please let me know how you go!

  4. Poppy says:

    Wow I love the idea of apricots with pesto – must try that! Looks very pretty πŸ™‚

  5. squishyfishy says:

    Oh my goodness, you tied yours up with a bow!!! That is amazing — and looks delicious! : ) I may have to steal this idea the next time I need a snack food for a party! (Although…. if you didn’t use pesto and used a sort of apricot jam, I wonder how that would taste? Hmm….)

    Thanks so much for sharing — that is one good-looking (and most likely good-tasting!) en croute!

    • Thanks Chrissa for your lovely words! I am glad we can all “inspire” each other worldwide too!
      I think it would be nice with a “thicker” jam. Just make sure not to overfill and make sure the are no holes in the pastry or the cheese will melt out! πŸ™‚ Please let me know how you go!

  6. Aisha says:

    Woooooooooow… love your “en croute”! It looks delicious!!
    I will give it a try next time I make them πŸ˜‰
    Wish you nice day (afternoon for you, right?)

  7. snati001 says:

    Wow! The pastry looks amazing! I don’t know if I would attempt to make puff pastry. Love the fruit, pesto, and brie combo. Must try this some time πŸ™‚

    • Thanks Samantha for your lovely words! Trust me, if I can do it, YOU (and others) can do it too! When I first made the pastry, I could not believe HOW easy it is to do! πŸ™‚

  8. That looks amazing! good job on making your own pastry too!

  9. I love the combination, it must have smelled and tasted out of this world!
    I love pesto and pairing with brie was pure genious

  10. hotlyspiced says:

    I just love the look of this. I love brie and this would be absolutely delicious especially when it’s plated straight from the oven – so yummy xx

  11. Vegetarian In Vegas says:

    Oh la la! Looks fantastic and a great way to use apricots!

  12. Joanne says:

    Brie en croute is one of my favorites!! The apricot and pesto are such nice touches!

  13. I could eat that whole thing without breaking a swear. It looks wonderful.

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About me

Joanne T. Ferguson

Passionate Home Cook who tries to inspire one recipe and one event at time!

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