Tuesday, August 23, 2011
How to Make Your Own Toaster Pastries
My boys just left for school about 45 minutes ago. And probably like 90 percent of the teenagers at their school, they had toaster pastries for breakfast. But my sons didn’t have Pop Tarts. I made them homemade toaster pastries.
Well, they weren’t exactly toaster pastries, although they’re the same shape and size as Pop Tarts. These are baked in the oven. Another difference: I think they have more flavor than the commercially-made toaster strudels. Also, while they still have quite a bit of sugar in the ingredients list, at least there are no artificial preservatives or other hard-to-pronounce ingredients. So while it’s not a whole grain brain muffin, it’s a little better for your kids than those store-bought toaster treats. That’s the reasoning going on in my brain anyway.
I bought a toaster pastry press at Williams & Sonoma, which I used to make these homemade pastries. I used their recipe on the package (although I made the dough in a bowl, rather than in a food processor bowl). Here it is:
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
2 T. granulated sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch cubes
6-8 T. cold water
½ cup filling (fruit preserves, jam, apple butter or peanut butter)
1 egg, beaten with 1 tsp. water until frothy
2 T. milk
1 ½ cups powdered sugar
Optional: decorative sprinkles
Put flour, salt and granulated sugar in a medium sized bowl. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, cut in unsalted butter until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Sprinkle water on top, 1 tablespoon at a time, moistening a bit more of the flour mixture after each addition. Shape into two balls. Dough should be firm and pliable, and not wet or sticky. Refrigerate for 2 hours to make the dough easier to work with.
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll out out each dough ball into a rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. Using the larger cutter, cut out each dough ball into eight pastry rectangles. (If you don’t have the toaster pastry press from Williams & Sonoma, you could use a rectangular shaped cookie cutter, about 3X5 inches, or you could cut out your own dough squares with a knife.)
Place half of the dough rectangles on the baking sheet. Using a butter knife, spread about 1 to 1 ½ T. of filling onto those pastry rectangles, leaving a ½-inch border. Brush the edges with the egg and water mixture. Top each with the rest of the dough rectangles. Press down the edges to seal. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, and then bake. (You can also make these up ahead of time and freeze them. Be sure to put plastic wrap between the pastry layers, so they don’t stick together).
Bake pastries in 350 degree oven, about 25-30 minutes, or until lightly golden in color. Remove from oven. Cool about 10 minutes. While cooling, blend the milk and powdered sugar together to make a glaze. Spread the glaze over pastries. Top with sprinkles, if desired. Serve while the pastries are warm.
Here are some photos of the dough rectangles, which I filled with homemade strawberry jam:
Besides breakfast treats, these pastries also make yummy snacks and desserts.
Have a great day!