Craft Beer, Fine Wine, Artisan Spirits, and Mouthgasmic Food.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tipsy Bacon and Parmigiano Reggiano Wassail Apple Turnovers

When I saw that Whole Foods was having a Parmigiano Reggiano contest, I jumped at the chance to submit one of my recipes. Here it is.  Enjoy! 

Makes 36 turnovers. All photos by John Knox.

bullet4 cups apples, diced into 1/4 inch pieces. I used fuji apples.
bullet1/4 cup white sugar
bullet1/4 cup brown sugar
bullet1/2 cup brandy
bullet1/2 cup dry sherry
bullet1/4 cup Laird's Apple brandy
bullet1/4 tsp ground ginger
bullet1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
bullet1 tsp cloves (whole)
bullet1 tsp allspice (whole)
bullet1 cinnamon stick
bullet1 tbsp cornstarch
bullet1/2 lb bacon, any flavor you desire except jalapeno.
bullet1/2 - 2/3 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, grated or chopped finely
bullet2 packages frozen puff pastry dough (2 sheets per package)
bullet1 egg for egg wash
Bacon Preparation:
Chopped the bacon into 1/4 inch pieces.  Brown the bacon in a pan until the fat as rendered out and it is crispy, but not burnt.  Drain thoroughly, and blot with a paper towel if it is still greasy.  Set it aside to cool. 
Create a satchel out of cheesecloth with the cloves and allspice.  Or you can put the cloves and allspice in a tea ball infuser.  Combine apples, white sugar, brown sugar, brandy, dry sherry, Laird's apple brandy, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, and cinnamon stick and the satchel or tea ball infuser of cloves and allspice in a large pot and bring to a simmer.  Don't boil the apples (that will be at the end), but simmer them for about 15 minutes.  While the mixture is simmering, mix 1 tbsp cornstarch with 2 tbsp cold water.  Remove the satchel or tea ball infuser and the cinnamon stick.  Pour the cornstarch slurry into the apple mixture and allow to boil until the mixture begins to thicken. Remove the mixture from heat and allow to cool.  Mix in the bacon bits and the cheese when cool.  If you don't allow it to cool, your mixture my turn into a gooey mess.  You can make this mixture several days in advance.  Store in the fridge until ready to make the turnovers.  

Preparing the turnovers:
Allow the puff pastry to thaw slightly while preheating an oven to 400 degrees.  Make egg wash by beating one raw egg with 1 tablespoon of water.  On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to stretch it out slightly.  Using a pizza wheel, cut into nine squares by making two vertical cuts and two horizontal cuts.  For Alton Brown's tutorial on puff pastry, watch here and here.  These are not my videos.  Place 1 tablespoon of filling in the center of each square. Brush inside edges of puff pastry with egg wash and fold over to make a triangle. Using a fork, seal the edges.  Using the prongs going perpendicular to the puffy edges, seal by imprinting the edges with the fork.  Poke a slit or two in the top of each turnover with a sharp knife. these can be baked on foil lined pans, but I prefer to move it to parchment paper lined pans at this point.  Brush tops with egg wash. Bake in oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Serve hot or cold.  Pair with a bubbly cava or a strong ale, stout or porter. 

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