Last week, I had a very good mail day as I received coupons for two different product samples in the mail. One of those coupons was for Pepperidge Farm puff pastry, sent to me via the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program. I had been in the mood for a certain combination of flavors, and I knew exactly what I was going to make. I had to wait until I returned from San Diego to start cooking, and I was eager to get started on my first day home. The inspiration behind my puff pastry was our many trips to Ireland and the food that is often on my in laws’ table when we visit Galway. There is always smoked salmon, fresh Irish cheddar cheese, and brown bread for tea sandwiches. Instead of bread, I started with Pepperidge Farm puff pastry shells.
These pastry shells are easy to use, taste homemade, and can be used for an endless variety of savory or sweet dishes.
They require that you preheat the oven to 400. The package says to cook the pastries for 20-25 minutes, but I set it for 20 and kept an eye on them. They were completely done and getting close to too golden after about 18 minutes, so be careful! While the puff pastry was cooking, we finely chopped Kerrygold Dubliner cheese with Irish stout. Next time it would be a lot easier just to grate it. This cheese is very good, nutty, salty with the smallest hint of stout at the very beginning.
I also cut some smoked salmon while the puffs cooked. Now, in Ireland we get Connemara smoked salmon, fresh, local, and amazing. Here we bought Nova Scotia salmon at the regular grocery store. It worked out perfectly, but I can’t say I am not looking forward to eating Irish salmon on brown bread in a couple of months!
Once the puff pastry was cooked, I removed it from the oven to let it cool. Pretty amazing how quickly it puffed up! It looked like a biscuit but was made of buttery, flaky layers.
According to the package directions, I carefully cut the tops off of the puffs and started layering my filling.
Layering the cheese first in the piping hot pastry melted it slightly, allowing it to settle into the pastry layers. I topped the cheese with a generous heap of smoked salmon. I glazed the top of the puff pastry with the spicy apple mustard from Made in Napa Valley that I received in my Foodbuzz swag bag. The Foodbuzz festival just keeps on giving!
In less than 30 minutes, we had the most delicious little bites full of ooey gooey cheese, salty, tender smoked salmon, and spicy mustard laced with apple cider flavor which went perfectly with the smokiness of the salmon. The pastry is delicious, tastes like it just came from a bakery, and could just as easily pair well with chocolate or fruit. This dish or a variation on it would be an easy hit at any holiday party. We have two puff pastries left, and I am excited to try a different recipe with those. Thank you, Pepperidge Farm and Foodbuzz for providing me with the opportunity to try such a delicious, easy to use ingredient!