Cream Filled Puff Pastry

Cream Filled Puff Pastry

PASTRY:
1 (17.3 ounce.) package. frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed per package directions
1 egg
1/4 Cup milk
1-2 tablespoon sugar (If you have coarse sugar, by all means USE IT-that makes the tops crunchy-if not, regular granulated sugar works just fine too!)

Remove the package of puff pastry from the box; take it out of the wrapper
and allow it to sit on the counter @ room temperature for 20-30 minutes.
Carefully open one pastry sheet along the creases; place remaining sheet in
the refrigerator to keep it cold (I leave the puff pastry on the counter
just long enough to be able to unfold it without tearing-if it’s still a
little frozen, that’s fine…I find that it puffs higher in the oven the
colder it is).

Using a long, sharp knife, cut each strip of pastry at creases, forming 3
strips. Cut each strip widthwise into 7 pieces, slicing straight down-don’t
drag the knife across the pastry. Flip each cut piece over ( to place the
side you cut on down onto the sheet). Place on lightly greased baking
sheets, leaving room between each piece (I usually use 3 baking sheets).

Combine egg and milk; lightly brush over pastry. Sprinkle with sugar.

Bake @ 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to a wire rack and cool completely. Using a serrated knife, slice through the center
to make top and bottom halves.

CREAM FILLING:

1 c. whole milk
5 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 c. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. shortening
1/2 c. butter or margarine, at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Place flour in a small saucepan; slowly whisk in milk (I use a whisk and
beat the you-know-what out of it). Cook and whisk constantly over low heat
until mixture thickens and comes to a boil. Remove from heat; place mixture
into a small bowl. Cover bowl with a paper towel and cool to room
temperature. Place cooled mixture in bowl of electric mixer; beat until
fluffy. Add remaining ingredients, one at a time, and continue beating on
medium-high speed for 5-10 minutes or until light and fluffy (I use my
KitchenAid mixer-I start with the paddle, then when all the ingredients are
very well mixed, I switch to the whisk attachment and let that do the rest
of the work). The mixture should look like a whipped cream type frosting. I
rub a little of it between my fingers to make sure the sugar has totally
dissolved. Spread about 1 Tbsp. of filling on bottom half of each pastry (BE
GENEROUS-you can always go back if you run out of filling towards the end
and “borrow” from one pastry to fill another…been there, done that!);
replace tops. Store in refrigerator.

Yield: 42 pastries.