We’ve been spring cleaning like crazy around here lately. It’s so invigorating to be able to open the windows after having them firmly shut since November. And even though I hate doing laundry, there is something incredibly peaceful about hanging the first couple loads of clothes and sheets and towels on the line. Everything is fresh and crisp and the pile of laundry has dwindled to a less shameful height.
In the middle of all this frenetic cleaning my attention has turned to my freezers. They are, in short, an abysmal mess. Last Fall’s organization campaign, complete with manifests of the contents therewithin, came apart midway through the second week of December when I realized I had stashed all my Thanksgiving leftovers on top of my carefully stacked piles of this and that. Shortly after that I added several turkey breasts and some frozen peas that I had purchased on sale and it was all downhill from there. I’m in the beginning stages of clearing out the freezer to make room for this summer’s bounty.
A few days ago I decided to really crack into the frozen wasteland that is my chest freezer and make a difference. Stashed in among the frozen detritus was a half used box of puff pastry. I sat it on a cabinet to the side of the freezer while rummaging around and trying to make sense of the mess. By the time I had done enough (translation: my fingers were too stiff to pick up and move anything else) it was time to get cracking on dinner and the puff pastry had thawed to the point where it wasn’t re-freezable. I figured this was as close to a sign from God as I was going to get about that evening’s dinner plans.
Keeping with the rummaging theme, I scoured the fridge and found a container of leftover seared mushrooms á la Pastor Ryan on the Pioneer Woman’s Website, (If you have never made these you MUST make them this very instant. I’ll wait right here while you do it. *tapping desk… tap… tap…* Okay, ready? How awesome are those? I think they just may be one of my favorite things to eat. Ever. Thanks, Ryan!) and a biggish hunk of Asiago cheese. Because the mushrooms are already seasoned and cooked with shallots, salt and pepper, most of the dish was already done. Sometimes food just makes itself, doesn’t it? The mushrooms, Asiago and puff pastry made the most beautiful and delicious crispy, savory accompaniment to beef stew. Not to be forgotten was the warm, self-satisfied glow of not wasting food and almost, maybe, perhaps, kind-of beginning to clean my freezer. Cleaning never tasted so good!
*If you happen to have some crispy, crumbled bacon or pancetta handy it would not be out of place in these puffs. I didn’t have any and these tasted simply wonderful. But boy, if I’d had bacon…
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Crispy Seared Mushroom and Asiago Puffs
- 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
- 2 cups seared mushrooms
- 1 cup grated Asiago cheese
- Fresh ground black pepper to taste
- Optional, 1 egg beaten with 1 Tablespoon water for a glaze.
Preheat oven to 400°F.
On a lightly floured countertop, roll the puff pastry sheet into a rectangle that measures approximately 10″ x 12″.
Evenly spread the mushrooms on the puff pastry to within an inch or so of the edges.
Sprinkle the Asiago cheese evenly over the mushrooms and grind pepper over the top to taste.
Roll both edges over the mushroom and cheese filling toward the center like you’re rolling up a double scroll.
When both rolls reach the center, press together firmly enough to get them to stick, but not firmly enough to squish the works.
Transfer carefully to a cutting board and cut into 1″ slices.
Lay, cut sides down, on a silpat or parchment lined baking sheet.
If using the egg glaze, brush the pastry before baking. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden. Remove tray from oven and allow puffs to cool for five minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
Serve warm or at room temperature. Drool. Eat. Repeat.