I know you all are aware of that wonderful thing called puff pastry. It comes in the form of danishes, croissants, bear claws, turn-overs, and a multitude of other guises. However, many of you may not know the work that is involved in making the puffy pretties.
It is a regular dough, similar to most others, with the very notable difference of being folded into layers with a slab of butter equal to one pound, four ounces. This is a terrifying sight, especially to the diet crowd. Unfortunately, it is the only system to give the pastry it's flaky, puffy greatness.
So this week(over the coarse of three painstaking days) I made the dough, folded the butter in, and chilled the concoction three times over. This may sound simple, but if you've ever worked with chilled butter in any fashion you know that to roll out a slab of chilled butter is about as easy as being given a large rock and told to make some sand. It's slow going and it's hard going. The palms of my hands were, quite literally, bruised when I rolled the dough out this morning. My back and forearms were sore and achy from the unusual exertion forced on them.
Today I saw the fruits of my back aches! Today we completed the puff pastry dough and made some pretties that I am very excited about. These things were well worth the effort. (Don't get any idea's though. I'm not about to go home and clear a shelf in my fridge for this terror.) The pastries turned out awesome. The Crosiants turned out so flaking and buttery, they seriously just about melted in my mouth. There's also some business involving chocolate that I just won't subject you to, but it was fabulous as well.
I don't recomend this as a ruetine sunday breakfast tradition, but if you're feeling adventurous or looking to tone some back and forearm muscles, this might be just what you're looking for. If you're sane, you'll probably leave this to the professional bakers and just lean back in wonder, eating your flaky goodness, ache-free, and just a buck or two poorer.