Homemade Pastry Treats?!?!


Partner Content Sergeant Shortbread

Article by Matt Rosen

Photography by Matt Rosen

I was feeling a little nostalgic and started reading through old blog posts the other day. After reading this one, I just couldn’t resist posting it again…

So, here I am in my kitchen looking at a recipe for homemade pop tarts and thinking to myself, “what on earth do I know about cutting in butter?”. Oh yeah, I had to go straight to YouTube for that one! It was perfect timing for me to try making this timeless delicatessen, because my daughter and 6 of her friends from college were going to a concert in Minneapolis and then crashing at our house that evening. What a perfect breakfast for them when they woke up… or a midnight snack for a couple of them. It was definitely a lot more labor intensive than my usual shortbread cookies that I make, but there was no way I was going to use a pre-made pastry dough. I made the pastry dough completely from scratch, along with the cinnamon sugar and strawberry fillings to go inside.

As most of you all know, not all recipes go perfectly the first time you make them. You see where this is going! So, the recipe called for me to “egg wash” the pastry before baking, no problem I actually know what that is, so we are good. Well the problem came when I misunderstood the recipe (it was worded poorly, I swear!) and I put the egg wash on the inside of the two pastry halves before closing it up and sealing it inside with the filling. *Bakers note here, egg wash goes on the outside and this helps your pastry look nice and golden brown and not pasty white like yours truly ended up* Either way, they did end up tasting very good. Obviously, I had to try this again and actually make them correctly this time. The first time I made them I made my own filling using jam, corn starch, etc., so the second time I cheated a bit and used apple pie filling with my own little dash of cinnamon.

I wish I could say that the egg wash was my only misstep during the baking of these wonderful tasty treats, but nope it wasn’t. When you are preparing food, it helps to pay attention to what is on your counter and where exactly it is located on your counter. For example, you should try and avoid having your flour container sitting on the edge of your counter as you are rolling out pastry dough right next to it. Because it could potentially get knocked off the counter and explode like a flour grenade all over your floor. I’m not saying, I’m just saying.

At least there is a happy ending to this story. When I made the second batch that weekend, they turned out absolutely delicious! I lived and learned from both of my mistakes and it paid off with a delicious treat that was thoroughly enjoyed by a panel of experts, a group of college students. 

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