February 26, 2013

Veggie Puffs

Ingredients can make all the difference! Sometimes, adding a simple spice can make or break a recipe. Veggie puffs proved to be a great example for that!

Couple of months ago, we had a potluck arranged and I offered to make veggies puffs for the party! Though veggie puffs came out good, it was missing a little something.. that little magical touch of  the bakery!

Oh btw, did I tell you that I am a great fan of veggie puffs that you get in Indian bakeries! I love the smell of freshly baked puffs and simply cannot resist them! Even if there are loads of baked goodies in front of me, my heart beats only for these buttery, flaky treats. A crunchy bite here, a spicy bite there, a sip of cool drinks to wash everything down amidst a lot of gossip with friends = total fun!

So, as I was blog-hopping & comparing other recipes to see where I was missing out, I saw that some of the recipes were using fennel seeds. Initially, I was very skeptical about how big of a flavor boost that fennel seeds would give to the recipe. But, my doubts quickly dispelled after tasting the results! Would you believe if I tell you that a tsp of fennel seeds enhanced the flavor to be top notch and veggie puffs were tasting very much like bakery puffs!

Well, If you still aren't believing me, try this recipe & see it for yourself!

Basic Info
Complexity - Medium
Prep time - 20-30 mins
Cook time - 30 mins
Serves - 9-10 puffs

Onion - 1 no (medium sized, chopped)
Ginger - 1 inch (grated)
Garlic - 2 pods (minced)
Green chilli - 1 no (finely chopped)
Carrot - 1 no (medium sized, chopped into tiny bits)
Beans - 15 nos (cut into thin pieces)
Peas - a handful
Potatoes - 3 nos (small sized, chopped into tiny bits)
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Fennel seeds - 1/2 tsp
Coriander leaves - to garnish
Salt - as required
Vegetable oil - 2 tbsp

Olive oil / Melted butter - to brush on top
Frozen Puff Pastry Sheets (I used piccadeli brand)
All purpose flour - as required (To work with the pastry sheets)

Take the puff pastry sheets out of the freezer. Follow the instructions given in the cover and thaw them for atleast 4-5 hrs or until soft.

Heat oil in a deep pan. When hot, add fennel seeds and let it splutter. To this, add onions, grated ginger, minced garlic, green chillies and saute until onion is transparent. Then, add chopped tomatoes and saute until tomatoes are soft & tender.

Add all the finely chopped vegetables, turmeric powder, garam masala, chilli powder, salt and give it a good mix. Cover the pan and cook on medium heat for 3-5 minutes or until the vegetables are soft & completely cooked through.

Finally, garnish it with chopped coriander leaves and remove from heat. Let the vegetable stuffing cool down completely.

Preheat oven to 375 deg F for 20 mins.

The puff pastry brand that I used had pre-cut squares. If not, cut them into squares of about 3-4" inches. Dust your hands with all purpose flour and lay the puff pastry sheets on to your working space. If the pastry sheets are too sticky, you can use some all purpose flour to dust them too!

Add 2 tbsp of the stuffing on one side of the pastry sheet and cover the stuffing by folding over the other side. 

Use a fork to press & seal the edges.

Line a baking tray with parchment paper, grease it with little oil and arrange the prepared veggie puffs. Brush olive oil / melted butter on top of each puffs. Bake for about 20-30 minutes or until golden brown whichever is first.

Serve and enjoy with a hot cup of coffee/tea!

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