It's All About The Layers...
Cheese and Bacon Turnovers
'Puff' is the trickiest pastry to master and so it's no wonder that many people opt for a ready-made shop brought pack. Not shy of a challenge the Gents are making their own to encase a yummy cheese and bacon filling, though this versatile pastry is just as great in creating a gorgeous dessert.
Puff pastry is all about the layers, so it is important to keep cool, both temperature and temperament, and work quickly so that the butter layers don't melt into the dough layers. As the pastry cooks, the moisture from the fat evaporates and this causes the dough to lift and create the puffed up delicate layers.
So with recipe in hand its is time to start. Using a food processor create a rough dough by gradually combining the water with the flour. When it comes together remove from the mixer, wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.
Whilst the dough is chilling its time for the butter. Cut into chucks and between two pieces of baking parchment tap to combine the pieces. Even up the edges and put the trimming back on top and repeat until you have a pliable (but still cold) postcard card sized block. Put back in the fridge to chill.
Take the rested dough, roll out on a lightly floured work surface, to roughly a 25cm circle. Place the butter in the centre and fold over the dough to encase it. Giving the dough a quarter turn it is time to roll again, this time into a rectangle (roughly 18 x 38cm) ensuring you keep the sides straight. Now its time to fold the dough, we've opted for a book fold, and it's back in to the fridge to chill for around 20 minutes. This process is repeated at least three more times to build up those important layers and after the final roll/fold leave the dough to rest in the fridge for about an hour before use.
Whilst the dough rests prepare the filling. We winged it slightly by boiling two potatoes until tender, draining and roughly mashing them with a chopped onion, cooked bacon bits, grated extra mature cheddar cheese, chopped parsley and seasoning. Allow to cool.
Take the dough out of the fridge, roll out and cut into eight rectangles. Divide the filling equally between the rectangles, placing it to one side which allows the other side to be folded over. Fold the pastry over, crimp the open edges and egg wash. You can score a design into the top if you wish before baking in a preheated oven (220c/200c fan) for around 25 minutes or until golden.