An easy way to make home-made vol-au-vent. If you want to spend time with your family this Easter holidays, cooking together is a great idea and this recipe will help you to have everybody involved. A great cooking activity to get children involved as it is simple to do but requires a bit of a patience and handcraft.
Ingredients for 6/7 tapas
1 sheet of puff pastry
100 g goat cheese
100 g cream cheese
A bit of milk
4 piquillo peppers (available at Cambridge Cheese Co, or use peeled roasted red peppers)
1 clove of garlic
50 g fried almonds
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 tbs muscovado sugar
Caramelize the piquillo peppers
1.- Drain the peppers and save the liquid from the jar. Cut the peppers in half. Remove the seeds if there are any inside. With a pair of scissors cut the peppers in thin strips.
2.- Slice the garlic thinly.
3.- In a frying pan, put two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Over medium heat, fry the garlic until golden. Then add the peppers and the sugar and simmer for 10/15 minutes until the olive oil, the liquid from the peppers and the sugar caramelized. You will see the oil turn into a light syrup when it is ready. Set aside to cool.
Make the vol-au-vent
4.- To make the vol-au-vent, use two cutters, one bigger than the other. I use one which is 78mm diameter and the other is 58 mm diameter.
5.- Lay the sheet over a clean surface. With the big cutter, make twelve rounds. Then, over 6 of these rounds, make small rounds with the small cutter, leaving a rim around of approximately 1 cm.
6.- Turn the oven on to 180 C. Separate the egg white and the yolk. Use the white as a glue to assemble the two parts of the vol-au-vent. Brush with egg white the border of the big round. Then, carefully take the rim you made with the small cutter and place it over the big round. Press a little bit with your fingers to firmly seal the two pieces of puff pastry. Once you have all rounds assembled, brush the rim with the yolk and put in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes until you see the puff pastry has raised and the rim is golden. Remove and let cool on a rack.
Prepare the cheese and almonds
7.- In a bowl mix the goat cheese and the cream cheese. Use a bit of milk to combine them into a smooth and uniform texture.
8.- Crush the almonds in a blender or mortar. You can use almond flakes instead. Or chopped chives instead of almonds.
9.- Once you have all the ingredients ready, assemble before serving.
10.- Remove the centre of the vol-au-vent with a sharp knife. In a piping bag put the cheese and fill the vol-au-vent. Put a bit of caramelized piquillo peppers on top and sprinkle some crushed almonds.
11.- Buen provecho!