Archive for January, 2009

Strawberry Jam Pinwheel, KBB#9 – Classic Puff Pastry (Pate Feuilletee)

Thursday, January 29th, 2009


It turns out that puff pastry is not hard to make at all! Wohooo. Now, you can expect loads and loads of puff pastry coming out my kitchen :-) . Thanks KBB!

Source: King Arthur Flour 200th Anniversary Cookbook

1 pound (4 cups) unbleached all purposed flour/plain flour (or 3 ½ cups all-purposed/plain flour + ½ cup cornstarch/cornflour)

1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, ½ stick chilled, the rest at room temperature
1 – 2 tsp salt (1 for sweet, 2 for savory)

1 ¼ cups cold water (or substitute it with 1 Tbs lemon juice for 1 water if you wish to further temper the gluten in the flour)


Measure the flour into a mixing bowl. Remove ½ cup and set it aside in another bowl.

Take the half stick of chilled butter, cut it into small pieces and drop it into the flour. With two knives, a pastry blender or your fingertips, cut or rub the butter into the flour until it resembles cornmeal.

Add the salt (and optional lemon juice) to the water and add this to the flour. Mix gently with a fork until you have a rough dough that pulls away from the sides of the bowl. If you need to add more water, do it a tablespoon at a time until the dough holds together.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until it is smooth and the gluten has been somewhat developed, about 2-3 minutes. Wrap it in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.



Take the remainder of the butter and the reserved flour and mix the two together until they’re well blended and smooth. You can do this with a mixer, a food processor or with a spoon, by hand.

Pat this butter/flour mixture into an 8-inch square on a lightly floured piece of waxed paper. Cover it with second sheet of waxed paper and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes. By mixing the butter with flour, you stabilize it somewhat so it won’t decide to ‘flow’.



Remove the dough from the refrigerator and put it on a lightly floured surface. Gently roll it into a square about 12 inches on a side. You don’t have to be obsessive about the dimension but be pretty close.

Put the butter square in the centre of the dough square but turn it so that the corners of the butter square point toward the sides of the dough square. Fold the corners of the dough over the butter until they meet in the middle. Pinch and seal the edges of the dough together.

Turn the square over and tap it gently with your rolling pin or by hand into a rectangular shape. Rolling the dough into a larger rectangle 20 inches long and 10 inches wide.

When the dough is the right size, fold the bottom third of the dough up to the centre and the top third over and turn the dough package ¼ turn to the right so it looks like a book ready to be opened. If the dough is still nice and cold and still relaxed, do another rolling and turning the same way. (If it begins feel too soft or wants to resist being rolled, cover it, put it on a small baking sheet and refrigerate it for 15 minutes).

If you’ve successfully rolled it out and folded it twice, you’ve completed 2 turns. Classic puff pastry gets six. Continue refrigerating it after each 2 turns (or more often if necessary) until all 6 turns are completed.



When all 6 turns are done, put the dough in the refrigerator for at least an hour (and preferable overnight) before shaping.


After being thoroughly chilled, the dough can be shaped into croissants, patty shells, twists, straws, etc. Scraps can be chilled and rerolled.


Like other pastry doughs, you can freeze puff pasty in a non-self defrosting freezer for up to a year if it’s well wrapped. It can also be frozen at any time during rolling, folding, turning process. Defrost it thoroughly before you use it, just to make sure it does not get too soft.

Shaping the pinwheel puff pastry:
Cut the puff pastry in equal-sized squares (you dont have to be obsessive about the measurements).
Cut along the two diagonal lines, but leave the middle part intact (you’ll end up with 4 ‘leaves’ of dough).
Take every side of the ‘leaf’ and pin it to the middle
Drop the jam on the middle part.
Heat the oven 200 degrees celsius. Bake until it turns into a light golden brown, decrease the temperature to 190 deg celsius. Bake until it is done.




Palai Bada

Thursday, January 29th, 2009


My dad is really picky about his food. This is one of his favorite. If you serve this, he’ll surely eat :)

1 handful of anchovies (fresh), drenched in lemon juice
2 handful of grated coconut
1 turmeric leave, sliced thinly
2 tbs chilly paste (amount is subject to your liking)
squeezed lime juice (amount is subject to  your liking)
banana leaves for wrapping (didiang*)

spice paste:
5 shallots
1-2 garlic
1 cm turmeric
1 cm ginger
Produce the spice paste in a blender or mortar


-Combine all ingredients and the spice paste
-Add salt to taste (if you like sugar, you can add it too :) )
-Drop 2 tbs of the mixture onto a clean banana leaf, roll it, and take toothpicks to secure the openings.
-Steam them for around 30 minutes
-Heat a crepe pan over a low heat (I guess you can also use other kinds of pan). Place the palai badas on top of it. Let them sit still until the banana leaves become a bit burnt (they are not supposed to be burnt, just a little burnt in here and there).

*didiang makes the banana leaves to be a lot easier to handle
-clean the banana leaves with a kitchen towel
-turn on your stove.
-Put the banana leaves on top of the fire. It will warm the banana leaves and turn its color into a slightly darker green. This does not take long at all. Dont burn your banana leaves :)