There aren’t enough hours in the day.
But really. On top of my usual workload of two hours of US history reading, an hour of studying, and an hour of blog work, I now have badminton practice every day. And I love badminton, but it’s so long and I have no time to bake during the week anymore 😦
Imagine if we all just didn’t need to sleep? We could do soo much more baking. Midnight baking. Sounds magical.
So anyway, I’m entering this little St. Joseph’s pastry making contest in honor of the feast day of St. Joseph, which is Tuesday, March 19th. A St. Joseph’s pastry is like an Italian cream puff, also called a zeppole.
I used the recipe from Diana’s Desserts, and I enjoyed it, but the pastry itself was a little bland. Next time I’m going to add a little lemon zest and possibly almond paste.
Yes, almond paste! For the Behind the Curtain Dessert Challenge, the other participants and I were required to make a recipe using almond paste and pastry dough. So I added some almond paste to the custard inside the zeppole.
Sorry for the lack of explanation in this post. It’s like 11:30pm and I’m really tired.
For the pastry shell: Make the dough, then fill a pastry bag fitted with an open star tip. To get Italian flag pastries, drip red and green food dye down the sides of the bag before, during, and after filling it with dough.
Pipe swirls about two inches in diameter onto a baking sheet.
For the custard: Grate about two tablespoons almond paste and mix with the sugar until it is the texture of sand.
You can make the custard beforehand or while the shells are baking. When the shells and custard have cooled, chop off the top of the shells and fill with custard using a pastry bag. Replace the top and dust with powdered sugar.
They’re really cute 🙂 That’s the most creativity I can come up with at this stage of exhaustion.
St. Joseph’s Pastries adapted from Diana’s Desserts
- 2 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 cups water
- 9 1/2 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter
- 6 large eggs
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with parshment paper and Pam.
- Combine flour, salt, and baking soda in a bowl.
- Heat water in a heavy saucepan. Add butter and swirl until melted. Remove from heat and add flour mixture.
- Beat with a wooden spoon until combined, then return to medium-high heat and stir until the dough comes away from the sides of the pan.
- Remove from heat again and add eggs one at a time, beating well with the spoon between additions.
- Pour dough into a pastry bag fitted with an open star tip. Drip red and green food dye down the sides of the bag before, during, and after filling.
- Squeeze swirls about 2 inches in diameter and 1.2 inch apart onto the baking sheet and bake 20 minutes or until golden.
- Let cool.
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tbs grated almond paste
- 2 cups milk
- 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Mix sugar and almond paste in a small bowl until it has the texture of sand. Add cornstarch and mix until combined.
- In a saucepan, heat butter and milk at medium-high until the butter melts. Pour in the sugar mixture and stir until it starts the thicken, about two minutes. Add vanilla.
- Remove from heat and slowly add eggs, beating well after each addition. Return to heat briefly and mix for a few seconds.
- Let cool.
- Chop tops off cooled pastry shells and fill with custard using a pastry bag. Dust with powdered sugar.
Conclusions: The addition of the almond paste to the custard was super yummy, and the next time I make these I will either add that or lemon zest to the shell. I liked the texture a lot. Next time, I will also add a maraschino cherry to top off the custard.
Happy St. Joseph’s Day!
Also, Happy Pie Day!!
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