Thursday, September 23, 2010

Caprice Salad in a Puff Pastry

Poker night snacks...

Should be bite sized, and should not be greasy or messy (someone says, "those cards are marked", gun fire follows and the Dentist pees his pants... not good).

So, last night, I contributed these...

Caprice Salad in a puff pastry.

Fast and easy... Little Cherry Tomato, little Mozzarella Cheese and my Walnut/Basil Pesto...

Wrapped in a square of puff pastry and you have a nice tasty little treat (and no one gets shot).

It ain't much, but the basil in the pesto is home grown.  I am sending this off to Girlichef who is hosting Grow Your Own, the blogging event for foods that you grow yourself.  It ain't much, but I was out of town during planting season this year (is there are extra bonus for the smallest garden?).

Oh! NutsBut the nuts in the pesto were not home grown... OK, here's that fair use and warning the good folks of the US Gov't have asked (ordered) bloggers to do.  I got the nuts FREE!!!  BWAHAHAHA FREE I SAY!  Yeap, the truly very good folks at the OH NUTS company contacted me and offered a few pounds of their nuts.  And Oh Boy, did OH NUTS ever come through for me.  I spent a few minutes navigating around their mail order site.  It was very easy to follow and amazing in the amount of products they carry.  Not just nuts (including the very rare unsalted cashews that didn't last long enough in my pantry to make it to any recipes.  Talk about good eats!), anyway, not just nuts, but dried fruits, chocolates, granola, candy and even specialty ice cream.  Take a minute and look over their site.  Very reasonable prices, easy to navigate site and a tremendous selection of bulk and gift items.

And, the good folks at the OH NUTS company are giving away a FREE trip to Hollywood (sure, Oh Nuts will send you fruits and nuts to your doorstep, but you also get a chance to visit the land of fruits and nuts).  Click on the enter sweepstakes button above and send me a postcard!

After all that set-up, this better be a winner of a recipe, and it is indeed.  Perfect for poker, but also would make a nice little appetizer, one of those fun things on a pass around tray.

A couple hints, roll out the puff pastry just about as flat as you can.  The pastry puffs up (duh).  You want these to stay bite size.  And the egg wash I talk about is VERY important.  Without good seals, the guts will blow out the pastry and not look right (tastes fine, but you want the little bundles, not a flatbread treat).

Making Ohio Pesto (Walnuts in place of the over-rated, over-priced and under-flavored Pine nuts usually found in pesto) is very easy...

1/4 cup chopped Basil (2 cups unchopped, by the time it runs through the mini chopper, it is MUCH smaller)
1/4 cup chopped Walnuts
1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
4 cloves of Garlic, minced
2 TBS Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Mix and ready to eat (everything tastes better on a Ritz)

Or, make these...

1 tsp Ohio Pesto
1 tsp Mozzarella Cheese
1 Cherry Tomato
1 4X4 square of rolled out Puff Pastry
1 Egg, beaten for an egg wash to seal edges

And, pretty much that's it... 

Bring the 4 corners together over the stuffing, press edges to seal and do a twist of the top.  Bake them in a 350 degree oven on parchment paper for 35 minutes and you have an Insulata Caprice in a pastry!


  1. But is it really a hardcore poker game if no one gets shot? Hmmm. Something to ruminate on today.

    I love these little bites of caprese deliciousness!

  2. I love these little appetizers. Great idea. Still can't get over how your photos have improved! Nice shots.

  3. LOL, if there was a prize, you'd totally get it ;). I love that you stuffed caprice goodness inside puff pastry...fluffy bites of heaven. Thanks so much for sending it to GYO this it! =)

  4. Creative as shi-at! Nice job, Dave.

    You know how you aren't supposed to do cherry tomatoes on kebabs because the hot liquid inside can burn the eater, did you do anything different to accommodate that, did the dough shield/moderate the hit, or did you just let them rest?

    Grab your free nuts and run! Wait....that sounds bad.

  5. I'm not much for individually served appetizers (I'm more of a big bowl of dip lazy guy), but these look fairly simple to put together and the pesto looks fabulous.

  6. Love the appetizers. Everything I love in a small package. Could it be bigger, pllllease?