The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Food & Health

September 24, 2013

A delicious hot puffed pocket

Puffed pastry dough is a totally underappreciated ingredient, at least as far as time-crunched families are concerned. It’s so versatile and easy to use, I’m not sure why it isn’t in the rotation in more homes.

Let’s start with breakfast. Unfold a sheet of it, cut it into quarters, then spoon something into the center of each. That something could be almost anything — chopped fresh apples and a sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar (or even jarred applesauce if that’s all you’ve got), fresh berries, red grapes, sliced peaches, even just a spoonful of jam.

Fold one side of each quarter over on itself, then use a fork to crimp the sides together. Pop them on a baking sheet, then bake for 12 or so minutes at 400 F. Done. They even can be prepped, then refrigerated overnight and just baked off in the morning. And any extras pack great for lunch.

At dinner, you can take the same approach, but opt for savory fillings. A bit of ham and some grated cheese are perfect. And perfectly speedy. Toss in some broccoli florets and it’s a complete meal.

Or cut the pastry sheets into 1-inch-wide strips and lay them across whatever casserole you are baking. They will brown and puff into a beautiful, flaky crust. Or don’t even bother to cut it into strips. Just lay the whole sheet over the casserole, crimp off the edges, cut in a steam vent or two, then bake.

One tip about working with puff pastry — you need to let it thaw fully before using (it is sold frozen alongside the pastry and pie supplies). You can do this at room temperature for 30 or so minutes. Or do what I do — pop the entire package in the refrigerator the night before. It will be good to go for breakfast or dinner the next day.

Text Only
Food & Health
  • American sunscreens need an upgrade

    The last time a new sunscreen ingredient came on the U.S. market, the Y2K bug was threatening to destroy our way of life. Intel had just introduced the Pentium III processor, featuring an amazing 500 MHz of computing power.

    April 24, 2014

  • A 'wearable robot' helps her walk again

    Science is about facts, numbers, laws and formulas. To be really good at it, you need to spend a lot of time in school. But science is also about something more: dreaming big and helping people.

    April 23, 2014

  • Center warns people of fertilizer dangers IOWA CITY (AP) -- Doctors at the University of Iowa Burn Treatment Center are worried by a spike in injuries from anhydrous ammonia, a chemical used to fertilize corn crops. The center usually sees one or two cases of burns in a year, but this spring

    April 23, 2014

  • New Americans turn to goats to address food demand COLCHESTER, Vt. -- A bunch of kids in a minivan are solving twin challenges in northern Vermont: refugees struggling to find the food of their homelands and farmers looking to offload unwanted livestock. The half dozen kids -- that is, baby goats --

    April 22, 2014

  • FDA Electronic Cigarettes-3 [Duplicate] Industry awaits federal regulation RICHMOND, Va. -- Smokers are increasingly turning to battery-powered electronic cigarettes to get their nicotine fix. They're about to find out what federal regulators have to say about the popular devices. The Food and Drug Administration will propo

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Do your genes make you procrastinate?

    Procrastinators, in my experience, like nothing better than explaining away their procrastination: General busyness, fear of failure, and simple laziness are just a handful of the excuses and theories often tossed around. Now researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder have added another option to the list: genetics.

    April 21, 2014

  • Kids get codeine in ER despite risks, guidelines

    Despite recommended limits on codeine use in children, the potent painkiller is prescribed for children in at least half a million emergency room visits each year, a study suggests.

    Use of the drug in that setting is hardly rampant — just 3 percent of kids' ER visits resulted in a codeine prescription in 2010, the 10-year study found. But with more than 25 million ER visits by children each year, the authors say far too many kids are getting the drug when better options are available.

    April 21, 2014

  • USDA orders farms to report pig virus infections MILWAUKEE -- Farms stricken with a deadly pig virus must report outbreaks as part of a new program to help monitor and possibly control the spread of the disease, the federal government announced Friday. Porcine epidemic diarrhea has killed millions

    April 19, 2014

  • The case for separate beds

    The other night I slept on a twin bed in the guest room of the house I share with my husband and our two kids.
    It was the best night's sleep I've had in years.

    April 17, 2014

  • Raw oysters spike U.S. rise in bacterial infections, CDC reports

    Raw oysters, so good with hot sauce, increasingly can carry something even more unsettling to the stomach: A bacteria linked to vomiting, diarrhea and pain.

    April 17, 2014

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.