November 28, 2021

What to do in place of the usual Thanksgiving dishes

For filling
3 medium sweet potatoes
1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt
1⁄2 teaspoon of nutmeg
1⁄2 teaspoon fresh ginger or ¼ teaspoon dried
1¼ teaspoon of cinnamon
1⁄2 teaspoon allspice
1⁄2 teaspoon of cloves
1⁄4 teaspoon fresh orange zest
1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
1⁄2 cup sweetened condensed milk
3⁄4 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons of flour
4 tablespoons of melted butter

For the dough (you can use a store-bought pie crust instead and skip ahead)
3 cups cold all-purpose flour
1¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1⁄2 cup cold shortening
1 stick of very cold butter, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1/2 cup ice water
Egg gilding made with 1 beaten egg mixed with 1 teaspoon of milk and a pinch of salt

For the marshmallow filling (you can also use prepared marshmallow fluff instead and skip straight through)
3 tablespoons of powdered gelatin
1/2 cup cold water
1½ teaspoons of vanilla extract
1⁄2 teaspoon of orange zest
1/2 cup of water
⅓ cup of wildflower honey
1¾ cup of sugar
3⁄4 teaspoon sea salt


For the sweet potatoes

1. Roast and peel the sweet potatoes, then mash them or rice and let them cool to room temperature.

2. Combine the cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, ginger, orange zest, salt, brown sugar, vanilla extract and flour, plus 2 eggs, melted butter and sweetened condensed milk, until smooth.

3. Stir mixture into mashed sweet potatoes until blended and refrigerate.

For the dough (if using store-bought dough, skip to step 6), sift together the salt and flour.

1. Transfer to a food processor and add the shortening and butter and pulse until the mixture is in pea-sized pieces.

2. Pour the mixture into a large bowl and toss in the ice water little by little by hand until you have a shaggy ball of dough.

3. Press the dough into a rectangle and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 2 hours, or overnight.

4. Take the pie crust out of the fridge and roll it out until it’s just under 1/4 inch thick.

5. Cut the dough into 4×4 inch squares.

6. Put the squares in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes to keep them cool while you fill them.

7. Remove the squares from the freezer and use your finger to poke a small well in the center of each.

8. Place a mound of 3 to 3 ½ tablespoons of the filling in the well. For the top of your “Pop-Tart”, make a well of the same size in another square.

9. Brush the edge of the bottom square with a very small amount of egg wash and line up the top square with your filled square. Press the top and bottom crust together. Repeat until all “Pop-Tarts” are filled. Place them in the freezer until ready to cook.

ten. Preheat your oven to 450 ° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Brush the “Pop-Tarts” with egg wash, poke a small hole in the center and bake in a preheated oven on the middle rack for 18 to 24 minutes or until golden brown. Cool them on a wire rack.

For the marshmallow filling (go to step 6 if using prepared marshmallow fluff)

1. Mix gelatin with ½ cup of cold water. Add the vanilla extract and orange zest. Stir to combine.

2. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the other ½ cup of water, honey, sugar and sea salt.

3. Cook over medium-low heat until syrup reaches 245 ° F on a candy thermometer.

4. Pour the syrup into the bowl of a stand mixer and scrape all the syrup into the bowl using a heat-resistant spatula. Let cool, 6 to 8 minutes, to approximately 212 ° F.

5. Stir the gelatin mixture into the mixing bowl with the syrup. Whisk over medium-low heat for 30 seconds, then stir over medium-high heat until mixture approximately triples in volume, about 8 to 10 minutes.

6. Garnish the “Pop-Tarts” with the marshmallow mixture and let stand, uncovered, for 10 to 12 minutes. You can use a culinary torch to grill it until golden brown. If you are using prepared marshmallow fluff, simply spread it on top and do not use the culinary torch – avoid heating completely or the fluff will melt.

Makes 8 to 10 “Pop-Tarts”. If you don’t feed a crowd, the recipe can be cut in half. These also freeze well uncooked.

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