Pastry Drills

December 20th, 2009 | Posted by Alison Spath in Party Time

Today we celebrated the winter solstice with my mom and step dad at our house. After the laziest morning ever (read: I didn’t get in any exercise) I make a quick trip to Wegmans like a complete fool. I needed a few things for our little party and ended up fighting my way through what can only be described as the the biggest, craziest crowd of the year. The phrase “what the hell was I thinking” comes to mind.

A while ago I received a coupon in the mail from Foodbuzz to review the Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastries. It was my choice to opt in for this product review and although this isn’t something I would typically buy, I figured I’d go ahead this time knowing I’d probably use it for a party – and that’s exactly what I did.

The pastry sheets are simple sheets of dough that you can use for good or for evil… I mean, sweet or savory. I opted for the savory route today. I had no motivation to come up with any sort of original recipe and I therefore need to give major props to the recipe on the back of the box for helping me out today.

Recipe on the back of the box

Spinach-Cheese Swirls? I’m fairly sure that’s my middle name.

I set the pastry sheets out to thaw for about 40 minutes, as directed.


I shredded some pepper jack cheese and mixed with a little parm, kosher salt and garlic salt.


When my sheets had thawed I brushed them with raw egg. (That’s a fun sentence to take out of context. Try it.)


I sprinkled the pastry sheet with the cheese mixture, topped the cheese with fresh spinach and then things really got rolling.


By the time I got to the second sheet I was feeling warmed up and ready to strike out on my own. I left the recipe on the back of the box behind and scrounged the fridge for ideas.

I smeared some spicy vegetarian re-fried beans on the second pastry sheet, topped it with a little pepper jack cheese and finally, some of the Pace Picante salsa that showed up earlier in the week also for our review.

Topped with Salsa

Product placement at it’s finest.

I’ll be honest that I’m not crazy about the ingredient list of the pastry sheets – but for an occasional meal I’m not going to sweat enriched flour, monoglycerides, palm oil and high fructose corn syrup. No big deal here for a once and a while thing.

Puff Pastry Ingredients

Now please note that the recipe said to cut the rolls into slices and bake them that way, but for a variety of reasons I decided to throw caution to the wind and cook them whole. Due to the fact that I used fresh spinach instead of thawed frozen spinach, I was afraid the fresh spinach leaves would get dragged out by the knife as I sliced through the uncooked roll.

I brushed the tops of the rolls with more egg and into the oven they went at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.

Puff Pastry

Pretty, no?

Pretty - but not cooked in the middle

Well don’t get too excited because they weren’t cooked in the middle. I guess those people who wrote that recipe actually knew what they were talking about.

But never fear, I sliced them up and put them back in the oven for another 10 minutes and they puffed right up like they were supposed to. Crisis averted.

Close Up Slices

These turned out great – both the spinach and bean versions were awesome and we couldn’t decide which ones we liked better. We made a spinach roll and bean roll play tic tac toe to determine a winner but it was a Cats game so we still don’t know which roll was victorious.

The little health inspectors did their duties when my parents arrived with more snacks, plus dessert too.


We only made them ask 15 times if we could open presents before we finally caved.

Present Time - FINALLY American Girl Dolls

American Girl dolls for Ava and Maxine. Huge hits. Huge.

Presents Dolls

Gotta love gifts for foodies. A Mandolin! Oh man, it’s gonna be a veggie blood bath here tomorrow – just you wait and see!


And a new salad plate too.

Gifts for Foodies

Plus gifts for new home owners – given I fried my last cordless drill with my mad picture hanging skillz.


The rule here is that you’ve got to have messy hair and a crazy look in your eye when you hold a drill. I’m taking my new drill with me to Wegmans next time I go – I’ll fit right in.

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18 Responses

  • Julie says:

    American Girls dolls!!! Every little girls dream!! So fun! Is it sad that’s I’m jealous? I love the plate too, it’s very pretty!

  • Which American Girl dolls did the girls get? I can tell that one is Kitt…
    I had Felicity as a kid. I STILL like to get her out every once and awhile and dress her up in a new outfit! Seriously, your girls will love those dolls forever.

    • Alison says:

      hahah Lily yes! You have a good eye! Ava got Kit and Maxine got Ruthie. In the stories Kit and Ruthie are best friends. I never played with American Girl Dolls as a little kid so this is all new to me. They are LOVING them though, it’s really sweet.

  • Cindy says:

    I think you had a great fun day… we used to stand eggs up…I have forgotten to do that in ages now but it used to be great fun.

    Your new salad plate is beautiful…I have a mandolin that I am AFRAID of. If I can cut myself on a blade…it’s THAT THING.
    I am glad you took the day off…I don’t feel alone . I am SO READY TO GO JOGGING ….funny no?


  • maria says:

    I agree that I probably wouldn’t use those pastries often, but they sound good for a party. Also, I am may-jore-lee jealous of that slicer!

  • Erica says:

    Those little rolls look like the perfect party food. Great gifties! I want a Mandolin. Jealous… 😉 Hope you guys have a nice Monday- any cool plans?

  • Nicole says:

    I use those pastry puffs all the time! If you end up making a chicken pot pie (without the chicken in your case) you can totally use those for the crust on top! That is what I do instead of making a whole pie crust!

  • Jennifer says:

    OOoohhh…Ava and Maxine don’t realize what they have with American Dolls! I want to get one for Alyssa but they are so expensive. I even considered just buying one every yeard for her to just collect and not play with but, yeah right. (haha) Which ones did they get?

    Your snacks look delicious! Glad they turned out.

  • Oh gosh…I used to *love* my American Girl doll. 😀

    Those make the perfect little appetizer. Who doesn’t love puffed up pastries with cheese and spinach? Yum!

  • You are such a rebel! 😉 Glad you “saved” the swirls in the end… :)

    No close-up of the dolls??? I think it’s time for me to buy myself a doll; I’m staring at the pics way too long trying to make out the dolls…

    Have a great week! :)

  • Whit says:

    Ah, Kit and Ruthie! Good choices. I had Kirsten growing up…and I ordered my little sister Elizabeth [Felicity’s best friend] this year. According to her Elizabeth is the prettiest in the whole magazine? I assume that is why she did not pick a main character aka Felicity.

  • You’re the queen of using 2 swags in one recipe! JOB well DONE!!! yay for your creativity!

    The mandolin. I have used mine once. First and last. It was a bloodbath. Follow the directions! I thought I Was too cool for school and didnt need the guard after about 20 overconfident minutes. Use the guard :)

    And happy winter solstice! I posted about it today too!

  • Those spinach cheese puffs look amazing! Love the picture of you at the end – haha :)

  • Holly says:

    haha…that last picture is priceless.

    ummm i have 3 american girl dolls. you could say i was slightly obsessed – i am glad little girls still like them. too cute :)

  • Carbzilla says:

    I’m pretty sure I could eat puff pastry stuffed with puff pastry! That’s why I stay farrrr away, but good for you for giving it a go! They sound delicious!

  • Erin says:

    Oooo thank you for the superbowl recipe! Those look delishhhh!

    Love the power drill! Lookin’ good, crazy eyes! 😉

  • I’m currently having nightmares about you hanging sliced veggies all over the new house a la the new drill

  • barb says:

    Dufour makes a really good all-butter puff pastry which you can likely find at Whole Foods. Love it.