Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Last Peach Crumble of the Season and Ruff Puff


I bought these peaches about 4 days ago and just got to making a crumble from them last night.  October 15th and I'd think this is the last of the peaches for this year.  And boy oh boy, what a good peach year it was.

Contrary to what you may think, Ruff Puff is not a gay working class British guy.  Ruff Puff is the term used for a kind of puff pastry that is easier to make then traditional puff pastry.  This was only my second attempt at puff pastry and unlike the first one which was a fiasco, a leaden disc more suited to a construction site then a dessert buffet.

The key difference between the two kinds of puff pastry is that traditional puff is made with a large chunk of butter encased in a simple pastry which is folded like an envelope and re-rolled a zillion times at 10 minute intervals in the fridge to keep the butter from getting too warm and soft.  Ruff puff is made with the same process, only instead of a large chunk of butter it's butter chopped up into chunks and briefly folded with a very little bit of flour, ice cold water and lemon juice.  It's hard to tell from this picture but it actually worked very nicely.  The tomatoes were juicy and hindered the usual puffiness you would have gotten had I used cheese and apples or some other less runny mixture.  The most important thing was that when you bit into this tomato and cheese tart it was buttery with a wonderful multi-layered flakiness just as you'd want puff pastry to be.  As time consuming and annoying as it was to make I look forward to making it again and making sure I have the technique down so that I can finally say, at my advanced age:  I can make puff pastry!    It took me a full year to try again after my first attempt, but I'm glad I did.  Next week I'm making savory turnovers and if they work out I will post the recipe and you too can start making ruff puff at home as well.
Parchment paper after it's been baked on - I love the way it looks.

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