For this year’s Valentine’s Day menu, I wanted to have a fun dinner party for the girls. One of my best friends has a birthday on Valentine’s Day, and there are plenty of people who aren’t celebrating with a significant other. What a better way to celebrate than to have a girls night at home! To start the menu, I’ve made this fun rendition of a palmier. A traditional palmier is a sweet pastry shaped like a heart, which is very buttery and slightly sweet. The buttery taste comes from puff pastry, and the sweet comes from pressing the puff in sugar; otherwise it’s just flaky, delicious dough. Which means that it lends itself very well to savory flavors. For this dish, I have taken the puff pastry and stuffed it with a sun dried tomato spread and prosciutto. The salty prosciutto breaks up the fatty puff, and the sun dried tomato gives it just a bit of acidity to balance it all out. An adorable way to start a Valentine’s Day dinner.
Sun Dried Tomato Palmiers
Prep Time: 10 minutes Baking Time: 20 minutes Total Time: 30 minutes
1 sheet puff pastry dough, thawed
⅔ cup sun dried tomatoes
2 cloves garlic
salt and pepper to taste
4 slices proscuitto, optional
1 block Parmesan cheese
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Combine the sun dried tomatoes and garlic in a food processor. Pulse until the mixture is paste-like, roughly 2 minutes. Remove from the processor and season with salt and pepper to taste.
3. Roll the puff pastry dough out into a 12 x 12 inch square on a lightly floured surface. Use a pastry brush to spread the sun dried tomatoes in an even layer across the surface of the dough, leaving a ½ inch border around the outside. Add the prosciutto, if desired, on top of the tomato paste. Using a fine, hand held grater, grate the Parmesan cheese in a thin layer over top. Cover the entire surface so that it looks like a light snow has fallen.
4. Mentally, or physically if you are visual like I am, draw a three horizontal lines across the puff pastry. Do not cut the dough! Just draw a line. The first in the middle of the dough, and the other two halfway to the top and bottom respectively. By doing this you divide the dough into quarters. This will be your guide for the folding.
5. Gently fold the top edge of the dough to the first line at the top. Repeat the same for the bottom edge up to the bottom line (as shown picture 1).
6. Now fold the new top edge to the middle line, and repeat for the bottom edge so that the two edges meet in the middle (as shown picture 2).
7. Fold one last time so that the two halves are on top of each other, like a book. Use a sharp knife to cut the dough into ½ inch slices. Put each slice face up on a parchment covered cookie sheet so that you can see the folds. Pinch the bottom of each slice so that it looks like a heart.
8. Bake the palmiers for 15- 18 minutes, or until the dough is completely cooked through. Serve warm.