November 9, 2010

Vegetable puff pastry

Anyone hailing from India surely loves veg./egg puffs! It was something available at every bakery in any street corner and perfect to quench the hunger pangs that struck with renewed fervor especially when one crossed by the bakery. That fresh-baked aroma and the convincing crunch of the puff made it an instant favourite with one and all. Fast-forward to France. Sure we have a Hot Breads at Paris and they make excellent Indian baked goods. But lets be practical. Who’s going to go 10km to eat a puff? Well, we might.. if it wasn’t so easy to make them at home! Here’s a first look. I apologize for the poor quality of the photographs. It gets dark very soon these days and I had very less enthusiasm to setup the soft box and such. So I used one of our corner lamps as lighting and hence the unfortunate yellowish hue. The picture below though is from one of our exploits at Cincinnati with making puffs (thanks PT, VV and VR).

Puff  Vegetable puff pastries hot off the oven.

Considering I don’t make the pastry sheets and they’re store-bought the entire process of making a filling batch of puffs takes a little over 30 minutes. Which is next to nothing in the grand scheme of things.

If you’re interested, here’s what you need


For the exterior  
Store-bought pastry sheets – you can find this in the refrigerated section of your store 1-2 packets, depending on how many puffs you plan to make
For the filling  
1. Onions 1 large, finely chopped
2. Potatoes 3-4 medium sized, peeled, boiled and mashed
3. Peas 1/2 cup
4. Carrots 1 medium-sized, finely chopped and preferably boiled. Hint: Put  in the potatoes and carrots together in a pressure cooker to boil.
5. Green chillies 2, slit length-wise
6. Garlic 2 cloves minced
7. Salt To taste
8. Oil 1 tsp
9. Turmeric and asfoetida a pinch each


1. Set out the pastry sheets by unwrapping them from the package and let them thaw at room temperature while you get the filling ready.

2. For the filling.. use a heavy bottomed pan and heat the oil.

3. Throw in the asfoetida, followed by the green chillies, garlic, onions and the salt. Allow the onions to cook very well on a low flame.

4. Add the potatoes, carrots, peas and turmeric. Stir well and allow it to cook. If it becomes too “hard”, add a little water to make it’s consistency pasty. Think thick and not watery.

5. Once everything’s cooked, give it a taste test to see if you’d like to add anything to this mixture. I like to add a hint of amchur powder (dry mango powder) and jeera powder to it to enhance the taste. Also, 1/4 tsp of sugar gives it an enormous boost.

There.. you’re done with the filling! Set it aside to cool a bit while you work with everything else.

6. Turn on the oven and set it at approximately 180°C.

7. Get a baking tray ready with aluminium foil to protect the bottom. Spray gently with baking spray or coat with a thin layer of oil.

8. Cut squares from your pastry sheets, large enough to fold into triangles reasonably big enough to stuff with the filling you’ve just made. Think 8cm x 8cm types.

9. Fold it into a triangle and seal 1 side by pressing it together. Stuff some filling on inside the pocket you’ve created and then seal the other side. Note: If you let the sheets thaw too much, you might have a hard time holding shape while filling. It’s better to do it when it still hasn’t defrosted entirely.

10. Repeat 9 for as many puffs as you want to make and lay them on the tray. Shove them in the oven for about 10 minutes. This brown ands hardens the “bottom”.

11. Now you’d want to transfer them to a grilling tray so that you get the nice browning lines evenly everywhere. Alternately, you could do the entire thing on the grilling tray. Note: Place the “top” side of the puff face-down on the grilling tray to get those lines. Bake for another 10-12 minutes.

12. And that’s it! Take them out, allow to cool a bit and serve with ketchup, chai or both!

Bon Appetit! Enjoy!

239 Up close: Croissant style vegetable puffs!

PS: Any of the fillings can be altered to suit your taste. Experiment and enjoy!


Parasuraman said...

oh great fantastic looks mouth watering stuff keep it up

Anonymous said...


Jaya said...

Appa -> Thank you Appa :D

Anon-> Thanks!

Everyone, keep visiting for more!

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