RITIKA NARULA

Puff Pastry Dough – Easy Method

 

Puff Pastry is a rich, flaky and light dough made with flour and butter. Puff Pastry dough is used in many ways. In India ,vegetable Puffs or aloo Patties made with puff pastry dough are a common and very popular fast food item. These are available on every "galli and nukkad" of India. If you visit any college / big coaching center there are  chances  that you will find at least one shop selling patties.

 

 

 

 

Puff Pastry Dough is generally made with flour and a block of butter. Some people use margarin  in place of butter in the dough. It is a long process and takes around half a day to make the dough traditional way. I tried making the dough traditional way in the year 2016. It was such a long process and in a hot tropical country like India it is difficult to control the temperature and therefore melting of butter while rolling the dough. Our kitchens are not air conditioned and therefore i felt the outcome was not worth the effort.   It was not that flaky or tasty. But all the arms workout in preparation of the dough caused muscle pull . So i gave up the idea of making it at home.

 

Come 2020 and we all wore  our chef caps due to pandemic. Like everyone i too pushed my limits and tried things that i had never dared to try at home before. Although i wished to make  aloo puffs/ patties at home but i could not bring up myself to try it at home for many months. Since i love to know about food ,i read a lot on the subject and so i came across a concept of rough puff pastry or easy/quick puff pastry dough. It rekindled the hope of making the dough again at home. 

I researched on many recipes available online for this. Went through their reviews and watched the flakes carefully in the pictures but didnt try.   In February 2021, it seemed to be a best option for Valentines ( I love to express through my food). So i made a folder on my phone on puff pastry and kept all the material there and finally there was something that gave me hope. I could not make it on Valentines but the weekend following it was an  extended one and i just felt i should give it a try.

 

The recipe does not require much effort. It just require PATIENCE and your TIME.  The recipe that i used is non traditional quick/ easy one and it is result of all the research i did , taking cues from all the recipes i studied. The result was AMAZING! The dough was perfect resulting in beautiful and delicate layers. The Patties or Puffs were so khasta and crisp, taste buttery and texture just bang on. My Hubby declared it was the best patties he had till date. So the effort and recipe is total paisa vasool. 

 

Lets move to the technique now. The one most important thing in this recipe is " CHILLINGly- CHILLED" ( do u like the word ;)) The results are guaranteed with less efforts if you have space in your refrigerator / freezer and have time in hand. 

 

You have to plan this ! Just like you do to make chana, rajma, idli.  That's all. Minimum one evening (not day) before you want to make it. I started at 7 pm an evening before i put my dough to use. I was done with the process by 9 :45pm.  The dough requires chilling overnight ( atleast). I kept it longer as i used it next evening after my office timings. 

 

So while making preparations, you start by chilling everything  (I will use this word a lot in this recipe , Please bear):--

Measure ingredients then chill them .

Chill your bowl, spatula/ spoon, silicon mat or parchment paper

Chill your plate on which the dough will be rested

Chill everything you plan to use in the recipe.

Except for your hands ;)). Well, we wont be using much of  hand contact in the  preparation of the dough. 

I started with my butter which was already in the refrigerator. I measured it on kitchen scale. Then i had cut it lengthwise, placed a parchment paper in a tray and kept butter in single layer on it. I then covered it with plastic wrap and placed it in freezer for half an hour. Chilled/ Cold/ Non melting  butter is the hero of this. If you are able to keep it non- melting, chunky throughout the process as you can see in the picture of final dough, you will get through the recipe beautifully.  So mark this , bold this in your Mind!

 

Next i took a bowl and keep my measured maida or refined flour into the same. I took my spatula and silicon mat on (which i was planning to work) in the freezer for half an hour .

 

I found a place away from my gas so no heat is around my dough. I actually worked on my dining table comfortably sitting on my chair where it was not hot. 

 

After everything is chilled, we start our process of making a dough. Do not get carried away by the word dough as it does not require kneading and therefore gluten to develop . As i said we wont be using hands much. Just once and i will tell you when. 

 

We incorporate chunky chilled butter into our flour using spatula. I put my refined flour on a cold silicon mat and tried incorporating butter into it with a wooden cold spatula or spoon. I did it for a couple of minutes. I have used salted Amul butter for the recipe so i did not add any salt to it. If you are using unsalted butter, add salt to the flour.  

 

We dont want our butter chunks to melt . We just want to make them small by rubbing into flour

using spatula. Do not overdo the step. The butter chunks should be visible but it should be rubbed in with the flour throughout. Refer pics in directions of recipe to know the about the texture.

 

Take chilled water from freezer and add in batches of two.Mix it well . The dough will still be crumby . Dont worry. Try bring it together with the spatula once. 

 

 

Now is the time to use your hands for first and last time in this process. If the dough seems too crumby then  dab very little water ( chilled) on your hands and bring the dough together ( this water is in addition to 80 ml water we added earlier). Donot add much water, Just a dab! You might find the dough crumby but Dont Fret! 

 

Take out frozen plate we kept/ prepared  earlier for refrigerating our dough and place the crumby dough forming flattened ball or disc of the dough. Cover nicely with plastic wrap and Refrigerate for one hour . 

 

Our dough is ready and now we would not  add any other ingredient : no block of butter or anything to it. 

 

 

 

Only thing left is rolling it a few times to get those beautiful multiple flakes (I kept my dough from 7:30 to 8:30 pm in fridge )

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take a bench scrapper or wide spatula ( for lifting the dough) and belan or rolling pin and keep all this in freezer till your dough is chilling. 

 

Now the dough and tools are chilled. We take it out and try working out as fast as we can. 

Sprinkle dry flour on your mat/ paper and place dough on it. Using cold belan/ rolling pin, roll it in rectangular shape . 

 

All through the process of rolling and making layers, make sure the butter chunks dont melt or else you wont get flakes. If at any point you feel it is melting, chill it in freezer for 15 minutes and work again. 

Now fold over the 1/3 of the dough  over the middle 1/3 of the dough . Remove the excess dry flour from the top. Then fold over final 1/3 of the dough  over the top.  The dough might still be crumby so you can use the cold wide spatula or bench scrapper to lift your dough and make folds. See picture for reference. 

 

Now turn the dough 90 degrees and roll the dough into rectangle using rolling pin. Make fold again by folding over the 1/3 of the dough  over the middle 1/3 of the dough , removing the excess dry flour from the  top. Then folding over final 1/3 of the dough  over the top.

 

Turn the dough 90 Degrees again and repeat the folding process. Now it is time to refrigerate the folded dough a bit so the butter doesn't melt. Place it in the plate and cover tightly . Keep in freezer for 15 minutes. Keep silicon mat and rolling pin in freezer too. I have used two silicon mats here one for rolling and one was in freezer all the time so i could switch it whenever i feel the dough is getting warm .  This helped in maintaining temperature of dough throughout the process . 

 

Take chilled dough out the freezer and  repeat the steps of rolling it into rectangular shape using cold rolling pin /belan, folding over the 1/3 of the dough  over the middle 1/3 of the dough , removing the excess dry flour from the  top. Then folding over final 1/3 of the dough  over the top. Turn it 90 degrees and again folding it using the same technique.  If the butter is not melting and the dough is cold, you can repeat the folding process one more time. 

 

Till now we have folded the dough 5 to 6 times  and if you want you can call it a day and  refrigerate the dough overnight tightly covered and use the following day or a later day. But i froze the dough one more time for 15 minutes along with mat and rolling pin and repeated the process of folding twice - meaning rolling it in rectangle folding using 1/3 rd dough , turning 90 degrees and folding again. That ways i folded the dough 7 to 8 times as i wanted it to be very flaky.   The choice of making these two additional folds lies with you. But remember do not overdo the dough which means your dough should be cold and butter chunky. Please look at my final dough carefully the butter chunks are visible clearly. Because if you over do it roll it a lot without it being cold then you wont get the beautiful layers. 

 

Once you are done with folding. Tightly wrap the dough with cling film twice and then place it in a zip lock pack or air tight container. Refrigerate overnight at least . I used it after 15 hours. 

 

The process may seem to be overwhelming at first but it is not that tough. Once you get a hang of the folding process , it is a cakewalk. 

 

I made Potato Puffs or Aloo Patties with the dough the following day .

  The recipe can be found here.http://ritikanarula.com/recipes/aloo-patties-or-potato-puffs/ 

 

 

                                                                              

 

 

 

Also i made sweet Cream Rolls with the leftover dough. The recipe will be updated on blog very soon.

 

One thing that you must remember while using the dough in recipe of your choice is the Oven should be hot and dough or puff pastries very cold when u start baking. I preheated my oven at maximum temperature that is 250 degree Celsius for 40 minutes and kept my shaped patties/ Cream rolls in the refrigerator for an hour and placed the cold baking tray straight into hot oven and baked it. This ensures the butter will melt only in the oven creating the flakes. 

Now that we know all the  nuances, lets have a look at the recipe! 

 

AuthorRitika NarulaCategory, DifficultyIntermediate

Easier Puff Pastry Dough- If you have skipped the introduction , please go back and read( it is long i know but has important things listed to make sure you can beautiful results)

Yields1 Serving
Prep Time2 hrs 40 mins

 167 grams maida or refined flour
 189 grams butter( very cold)* see notes
 80 ml ice cold water

1

Measure refined flour and water.Keep mixing bowl, spatula , refined flour and water in a freezer. It is the single most crucial step. So make sure to freeze these at least for half an hour.

2

Measure butter and cut it lengthwise. Place piece on a parchment paper in a single layer . Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 1/2 an hour to 1 hour.

3

In the meantime, prepare a plate or dish by lining it with plastic wrap or parchment paper and keep in fridge. This will be used for storing our dough.

4

Now take out the chilled bowl from fridge and add refined flour to it. Actually I had chilled refined flour in the same bowl only. Now add frozen butter to it.

5

Using spatula ( which is chilling in freezer) to incorporate the butter into flour. Try to break pieces of butter into chunks using spatula. Make sure butter is evenly distributed in the flour. I mixed it in a silicon mat as it was easier to distribute it properly in it. I have frozen the silicon mat as well before this.

6

Now add chilled water little each time and bring the dough together. Add rest of water and using spatula bring dough together. Please don't use hands as we don't want butter to warm up and melt. SEE the texture here. The flour is coarse all through with even distribution / rubbing of butter and butter chunks are visible.

7

The dough will be bit crumby but don't worry.

8

Now just dab very little cold water ( as less as you can ) on hand and for one final time use hands and bring the dough together without kneading.

9

It might be difficult to manage crumbs but just put everything together and flatten a bit into disc

10

Now take out the plate or dish that we had kept in fridge for chilling in step 3 and wrap the dough tightly with cling wrap and keep on this tray

11

Chill in fridge for an hour or in freezer for 30 minutes at least.I kept in fridge for an hour and 15 minutes.

12

When the dough is chilling, keep your silicon mat or parchment paper and rolling pin in freezer.Also keep a dough cutter or bench scrapper in freezer if you want to use it.

13

Take the dough of fridge and sprinkle dry flour on a silicon mat. Place Dough on silicon mat ( which should be very cold) and start rolling with a rolling pin ( cold) .

14

Roll in the shape of rectangle but make sure that butter should not melt. Chunks should be visible in it.

15

Now fold old over the 1/3 of the dough  over the middle 1/3 of the dough ( from the smaller side of the rectangle) . Remove the excess dry flour from the top.

16

Then fold over final 1/3 of the dough  over the top.  The dough might still be crumby so you can use the cold wide spatula or bench scrapper to lift your dough and make folds. See picture for reference. 

17

Now turn the dough 90 degrees and roll again into rectangle.

18

Fold the 1/3 of the dough  over the middle 1/3 of the dough ( from the smaller side of the rectangle) . Remove the excess dry flour from the top. Then fold over final 1/3 of the dough  over the top.

19

Again turn the dough 90 degrees and repeat the process 1 or 2 more times. Please be sure that the butter is not melting. It was not that hot in my place so I was able to do it without freezing at this point. But if it is hot there, then keep dough in freezer for 15 minutes and then roll again and make folds.

20

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and keep in freezer for 15 minutes. Keep silicon mat and rolling pin in freezer too.

21

Now bring dough outside and roll it into rectangle and wrap and make folds . Turn 90 degrees and repeat steps.
Now place the dough again in freezer for 15 minutes. All through the process make sure the butter should not melt.

22

If you want you can use the dough with these many folds. But I wanted it to be very flaky so I took of dough from freezer one more time and repeated the folding process twice with cold silicon mat and rolling pin. So anywhere between 5 to 8 folds are good.

23

Now cover the dough tightly with plastic wrap and place in zip lock pack or air tight container. Refrigerate overnight. The dough keeps good in fridge for a couple of days when tightly wrapped with plastic. I wrapped it in parchment paper first then i wrapped it thrice with cling film and finally kept it in a zip lock pack.

24

You can use the dough the following day or any other later day. Just Chill your parchment paper or silicon mat and rolling pin and use the dough for making puff pastries/ potato or vegetable patties/cream puffs and baklava or any other recipe of choice.

25

Notes:-

I have used salted butter for the recipe but unsalted butter is preferred over salted one. Add salt if using unsalted.
If using salted butter, then add less salt in your filling while making savoury patties as the dough already contains a lot of salt.
IT is better to start the dough late evening that ways you wont have to do all the work in one day.

Ingredients

 167 grams maida or refined flour
 189 grams butter( very cold)* see notes
 80 ml ice cold water

Directions

1

Measure refined flour and water.Keep mixing bowl, spatula , refined flour and water in a freezer. It is the single most crucial step. So make sure to freeze these at least for half an hour.

2

Measure butter and cut it lengthwise. Place piece on a parchment paper in a single layer . Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 1/2 an hour to 1 hour.

3

In the meantime, prepare a plate or dish by lining it with plastic wrap or parchment paper and keep in fridge. This will be used for storing our dough.

4

Now take out the chilled bowl from fridge and add refined flour to it. Actually I had chilled refined flour in the same bowl only. Now add frozen butter to it.

5

Using spatula ( which is chilling in freezer) to incorporate the butter into flour. Try to break pieces of butter into chunks using spatula. Make sure butter is evenly distributed in the flour. I mixed it in a silicon mat as it was easier to distribute it properly in it. I have frozen the silicon mat as well before this.

6

Now add chilled water little each time and bring the dough together. Add rest of water and using spatula bring dough together. Please don't use hands as we don't want butter to warm up and melt. SEE the texture here. The flour is coarse all through with even distribution / rubbing of butter and butter chunks are visible.

7

The dough will be bit crumby but don't worry.

8

Now just dab very little cold water ( as less as you can ) on hand and for one final time use hands and bring the dough together without kneading.

9

It might be difficult to manage crumbs but just put everything together and flatten a bit into disc

10

Now take out the plate or dish that we had kept in fridge for chilling in step 3 and wrap the dough tightly with cling wrap and keep on this tray

11

Chill in fridge for an hour or in freezer for 30 minutes at least.I kept in fridge for an hour and 15 minutes.

12

When the dough is chilling, keep your silicon mat or parchment paper and rolling pin in freezer.Also keep a dough cutter or bench scrapper in freezer if you want to use it.

13

Take the dough of fridge and sprinkle dry flour on a silicon mat. Place Dough on silicon mat ( which should be very cold) and start rolling with a rolling pin ( cold) .

14

Roll in the shape of rectangle but make sure that butter should not melt. Chunks should be visible in it.

15

Now fold old over the 1/3 of the dough  over the middle 1/3 of the dough ( from the smaller side of the rectangle) . Remove the excess dry flour from the top.

16

Then fold over final 1/3 of the dough  over the top.  The dough might still be crumby so you can use the cold wide spatula or bench scrapper to lift your dough and make folds. See picture for reference. 

17

Now turn the dough 90 degrees and roll again into rectangle.

18

Fold the 1/3 of the dough  over the middle 1/3 of the dough ( from the smaller side of the rectangle) . Remove the excess dry flour from the top. Then fold over final 1/3 of the dough  over the top.

19

Again turn the dough 90 degrees and repeat the process 1 or 2 more times. Please be sure that the butter is not melting. It was not that hot in my place so I was able to do it without freezing at this point. But if it is hot there, then keep dough in freezer for 15 minutes and then roll again and make folds.

20

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and keep in freezer for 15 minutes. Keep silicon mat and rolling pin in freezer too.

21

Now bring dough outside and roll it into rectangle and wrap and make folds . Turn 90 degrees and repeat steps.
Now place the dough again in freezer for 15 minutes. All through the process make sure the butter should not melt.

22

If you want you can use the dough with these many folds. But I wanted it to be very flaky so I took of dough from freezer one more time and repeated the folding process twice with cold silicon mat and rolling pin. So anywhere between 5 to 8 folds are good.

23

Now cover the dough tightly with plastic wrap and place in zip lock pack or air tight container. Refrigerate overnight. The dough keeps good in fridge for a couple of days when tightly wrapped with plastic. I wrapped it in parchment paper first then i wrapped it thrice with cling film and finally kept it in a zip lock pack.

24

You can use the dough the following day or any other later day. Just Chill your parchment paper or silicon mat and rolling pin and use the dough for making puff pastries/ potato or vegetable patties/cream puffs and baklava or any other recipe of choice.

25

Notes:-

I have used salted butter for the recipe but unsalted butter is preferred over salted one. Add salt if using unsalted.
If using salted butter, then add less salt in your filling while making savoury patties as the dough already contains a lot of salt.
IT is better to start the dough late evening that ways you wont have to do all the work in one day.

Puff Pastry Dough – Easy Method

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