When this time of year rolls around, I always turn to the nearest person and say "I can't believe it's Thanksgiving". Well, once again, I can't believe it's Thanksgiving. Though I sometimes sound like a bit of a scrooge, I'm looking forward to sharing a table with friends and forgetting about the hecticness of life and being grateful for what I have around me. Of course, with my group of friends, no celebration is complete without a massive feast, so here is my contribution. I think I came across this recipe even before I thought of making my own quince paste and in my crazy mind, I decided I should make my own (that's just how my brain works). I love the fruit flavors combined with the salty, nutty cheese and the buttery crust. These are a little sweet, but just savory enough to be served as an appetizer to the meal. I'm making them small so people don't fill up too much before the main event. I'm looking forward to it all and once again I hope you all have a happy and delicious Thanksgiving!
One year ago: Braised Short Ribs with Autumn Root Vegetable Puree
Two years ago: Cannoli
Three years ago: Dumpling Noodle Soup
Apple, Pear, Membrillo, and Manchego Turnovers
(Adapted from Serious Eats)
Makes about 12 appetizer-sized turnovers
1 sheet puff pastry, thawed, and kept in the refrigerator until needed
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 pink lady apple, peeled and finely diced
1 Bartlett pear, peeled and finely diced
2 tablespoons membrillo
1 tablespoon sugar
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
12 1/2-inch thinly sliced squares of manchego cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten with a splash of milk or water for egg wash
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, add the apples and pears and cook until the fruit softens, about 4-5 minutes.
Add the membrillo, sugar, and salt an cook for another 3 or so minutes until the fruit softens even more and thickens.
Add the flour and cook for 1 minute until thoroughly combined in the fruit mixture and the raw flour taste is gone. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool. The mixture should resemble pie filling.
Roll the puff pastry out on a lightly floured board to a 12x12 rectangle. Use a 2 3/4-inch cutter to cut out rounds or cut 3x3-inch squares. Lay a piece of manchego on the lower half of each cutout. Top with a half teaspoon of the fruit filling. Dip your finger in some water and seal each turnover. Use a fork to press the edges together. Brush the top of each turnover with a bit of the egg wash and then use a paring knife to lightly score the top of each turnover so the steam can escape.
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the pastry is puffed and golden and the filling is steaming hot within.