Golden buttery crust and warm soft apple filling. What's not to like about an apple turnover? Oh right... usually the filling is gloopy and pastry tastes like margarine rather than butter. But these are French apple turnovers. Everyone knows that everything tastes better in French (otherwise who would eat foie gras- fatty liver?). These Chaussons Aux Pommes from Bon Appetit November 2008 issue are like the best apple turnovers you've never had. They're from Molly Wiezenburg's (of Orangette fame) column which is one of my favorite reads each month- even if the recipe isn't something that interests me, the story behind the recipe is always delightful.
This is an easy recipe- the only "difficult" part is sealing the filling in the puff pastry. "Difficult" only because it's a little time consuming, but totally worth it. I made a double batch to bring to Christmas at my parents for dessert last year- I made them a few days in advance and froze them and they turned out perfectly.
CHAUSSONS AUX POMMES
- 3/4 pound Granny Smith apples
- 3/4 pound Golden Delicious apples
- 1/4 cup water
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 sheets all-butter frozen puff pastry (President’s Choice sells a package of two), thawed
- 1 egg, beaten to blend (for glaze)
- Superfine sugar (optional)
FILLING: 1. Peel, core, and cut apples into 1-inch pieces (about 4 cups). Place apples in medium saucepan; add 1/4 cup water, 3 tablespoons sugar, and lemon juice. Bring to boil, stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves. Cover; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until apples are very tender, stirring frequently, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat. Gently mash apples with fork or potato masher until mixture is very soft but still chunky. Cool completely. DO AHEAD Filling can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate.
2. Position 1 rack in top third and 1 rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 400°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
PASTRY: 3. Cut each pastry into nine squares. Place 1 scant tablespoon filling in center of each square. Lightly brush edges of 1 pastry with beaten egg. Fold half of pastry square over filling, forming triangle. Press and pinch pastry edges with fingertips to seal tightly. Lightly brush pastry with beaten egg. Sprinkle lightly with superfine sugar, if desired. Repeat with remaining squares. Using thin, sharp knife, make 3 small slits on top of each triangle to allow steam to escape. Place triangles on prepared baking sheets. Refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes.
4. Bake turnovers until beginning to color, about 15 minutes. Reverse baking sheets from top to bottom. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F; continue baking until turnovers are firm and golden, 10 to 15 minutes longer. Cool at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature.
***To freeze, place uncooked pastries in single layer on baking tray and freeze until firm. Place in freezer bag up to 1 month. Thaw on baking sheet and bake as above.