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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

♥'s day

last weekend i faced a dilemma.
with valentine's day rapidly approaching, i had no clue what to make my friends.
so i cruised over to one of my many food blogs and browsed.
two peekchahs caught my eye. one of oatmeal creme pies and poptarts.
 you can practically hear the thud of my jaw dropping to the floor :)
as a child, i would be delighted to discover these in my pantry.
so when this recipe(s) popped up on my screen, there was no doubt in my mind that i would make them.
needless to say that they were a success.
my thanks to poet in the pantry and smittenkitchen for the recipes!

Oatmeal Creme Pies
adapted slightly from Tarheel Table
makes about 30 pies if you use a small scoop
  • 1/2 cup (8 Tbsp) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
Combine in a mixing bowl and beat until you get a creme the consistency desired. Set aside.
  • 1 1/4 cups (20 Tbsp) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (I used vanilla sugar)
  • 1 large egg, room temp
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 cups old fashioned rolled oats
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugars. Add the egg and vanilla and mix well. Sprinkle the baking soda, sea salt, and cinnamon around inside the bowl and while the mixer is running on slow, gradually add the flour. Once fully incorporated, add the rolled oats and mix well.
Use a cookie scoop for uniformly-sized and -shaped cookies. Drop on prepared cookie sheet and bake for about 10 minutes–be careful not to over-bake. Let sit on cookie sheet for 2-3 minutes before removing to wire rack to cool completely.
To assemble, take one cookie and smear creme filling on the flat bottom. Attach the flat bottom of another cookie to the filling to create a sandwich. Wrap individually or put in an air-tight container for up to 3 days at room temperature. They do improve with age so you may want to make them a few hours (minimum) to a day ahead of when you want to serve them.
*if you plan on packaging the pies, flatten each cookie out when they are halfway done baking. this makes them easier to package*
Homemade Pop Tarts
Adapted from King Arthur Flour
2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pats
1 large egg
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) milk
1 additional large egg (to brush on pastry)

Cinnamon Filling (enough for 9 tarts)
1/2 cup (3 3/4 ounces) brown sugar
1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, to taste
4 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1 large egg, to brush on pastry before filling

Jam Filling
3/4 cup (8 ounces) jam
1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cold water

Alternate fillings: 9 tablespoons chocolate chips, 9 tablespoons Nutella or other chocolate-hazelnut paste or 9 tablespoons of a delight of your choice, such as salted caramel or a nut paste

To make cinnamon filling: Whisk together the sugar, cinnamon, and flour.

To make jam filling: Mix the jam with the cornstarch/water in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, and simmer, stirring, for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, and set aside to cool. Use to fill the pastry tarts.

Make the dough: Whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Work in the butter with your fingers, pastry blender or food processor until pea-sized lumps of butter are still visible, and the mixture holds together when you squeeze it. If you’ve used a food processor, transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Whisk the first egg and milk together and stir them into the dough, mixing just until everything is cohesive, kneading briefly on a well-floured counter if necessary.
Divide the dough in half (approximately 8 1/4 ounces each), shape each half into a smooth rectangle, about 3×5 inches. You can roll this out immediately (see Warm Kitchen note below) or wrap each half in plastic and refrigerate for up to 2 days.

Assemble the tarts: If the dough has been chilled, remove it from the refrigerator and allow it to soften and become workable, about 15 to 30 minutes. Place one piece on a lightly floured work surface, and roll it into a rectangle about 1/8″ thick, large enough that you can trim it to an even 9″ x 12″. [You can use a 9" x 13" pan, laid on top, as guidance.] Repeat with the second piece of dough. Set trimmings aside. Cut each piece of dough into thirds – you’ll form nine 3″ x 4″ rectangles.

Beat the additional egg and brush it over the entire surface of the first dough. This will be the “inside” of the tart; the egg is to help glue the lid on. Place a heaping tablespoon of filling into the center of each rectangle, keeping a bare 1/2-inch perimeter around it. Place a second rectangle of dough atop the first, using your fingertips to press firmly around the pocket of filling, sealing the dough well on all sides. Press the tines of a fork all around the edge of the rectangle. Repeat with remaining tarts.

Gently place the tarts on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet. Prick the top of each tart multiple times with a fork; you want to make sure steam can escape, or the tarts will become billowy pillows rather than flat toaster pastries. Refrigerate the tarts (they don’t need to be covered) for 30 minutes, while you preheat your oven to 350°F.

Charming tip from King Arthur: Sprinkle the dough trimmings with cinnamon-sugar; these have nothing to do with your toaster pastries, but it’s a shame to discard them, and they make a wonderful snack. While the tarts are chilling, bake these trimmings for 13 to 15 minutes, till they’re golden brown.

*with the poptarts, i found it visually pleasing to lightly press and fork along the edges to accent the frosting*

1 comment:

dawn said...

ooh, these look delish!
thanks for the recipes.