fat bottom

fat bottom

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

a little bit of NY flavor

sometimes the hardest part about not living in new york is all the food that i cannot have... i know, boo hoo for becky... but seriously, there's nothing better then a warm slice of new york pizza (i heart)... a fresh from the oven new york bagel (i swoon)... and not to mention, the overindulgent new york pastries ( i drool)...
so sometimes i have to take matters into my own hands... we do homemade pizza here at least once a week (the husband and i are pizza nuts), lately it's been a lot of thin crust, fresh mozzarella grandma pies... and as for bagels, i haven't found a recipe that really peaked my interest (if anyone knows any please let me know)... but as for pastries... that's something i will not shy away from trying to make... even if i have to simplify the recipe, or fail trying... nothings going to stand in my way of achieving pastry bliss... because honestly, i can't justify jumping in the car and driving 3 hours to buy some Italian style NY sweets... well... maybe i could, but the hubs certainly couldn't...
so being that i was in the mood for a taste of home i pulled out an old favorite... the homemade napoleon... i first made these about 3 years ago for a 4th of july party... and needless to say, they were a huge hit... i can remember my late uncle tommy insisting that they were the reason he gained weight that summer... whenever i would make them, he would look at me, smile and say "ahh, the dessert that made me gain 10 pounds"... as i was working on them today, i shed a few tears remembering my uncle tommy... he was truly an amazing guy

the recipe is fairly simple... if you have the patience, you could certainly make your very own homemade puff pastry, but as for me, i sucked it up and used the store bought kind... what can i say... as much as i hate to admit it, sometimes it's just easier to go store bought... the only real time consumer is making the vanilla pastry cream, which really isn't too bad...

1 sheet of puff pastry ( i thawed it and seperated into 3 equal sized sheets, and baked according to the directions on the box)
pastry cream (thanks to dorie greenspan):

2 cups whole milk
1 plump vanilla been, split and scraped
6 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch, sifted
3 1/2 tablespoons (1 3/4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened and cut into 3 pats

1. bring the milk and vanilla bean (pulp and pod) to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. cover the pan, turn off the heat, and allow the milk to infuse for at least 10 minutes or for up to 1 hour.
2. if the milk has cooled, it will need to be reheated now.
3. whisk the yolks, sugar, and cornstarch together in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan. whisking constantly, drizzle one-quarter of the hot milk over the yolks. when the yolks are warm, whisk the remainder of the milk into the yolks in a steadier stream; remove and discard the pod.
4. put the pan over medium heat and, whisking vigorously, bring the mixture to the boil. keep at the boil still whisking for 1 to 2 minutes before pulling the pan from the heat and pressing the cream through a sieve into the small bowl. let the cream sit for 5 minutes, then whisk in the butter. Cover the cream with a piece of plastic wrap—press the wrap against the cream—and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.

as for the glaze, it was a simple milk, vanilla and confectioners sugar combination, and for the chocolate, all that was added cocoa powder to the vanilla glaze...

happy baking everyone!
and hey uncle tommy... "who has it better then us"


  1. Love that close up of the napoleon and the cream and glazes dripping down the side! Make you want to take a swipe at it. Mmmmmm!

  2. believe me, it was hard not to before i took some pictures! :-) it was very hard to resist!!


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