This week's choice at the Gutsy Cook's Club was Sun-Dried Tomato-Parmesan Crisps from Lucinda Scala-Quinn's Mad Hungry Cravings cookbook...they sounded really yummy and Sam and I were really looking forward to having a taste.
Made with sun-dried tomato paste, some olive oil and freshly grated parmesan cheese, this is a rather simple, quick and easy dish that could be served either as an appetizer or as a side to either soup, salad or any meal that suits your fancy.
The recipe calls for puffed pastry sheets, but when I saw the shells next to the sheets at the supermarket, I elected to go with them instead, and stuffed them with chopped baby portobello mushrooms, garlic and pignoli nuts along with the tomato paste.
Originally I had planned on serving it alongside grilled swordfish and salad. However, when Sam came home from his typical hard day of work, I had just taken them out of the oven and let me tell you...there was no waiting for the fish and salad.
Instead, Sam poured us some wine and we enjoyed a couple as appetizers in our backyard. The combination of sun-dried tomato, parmesan cheese, pignoli nuts and portobello was like having a puff pastry pizza. Yum!! Although, I think next time I'll add a bit more parmesan and or brush some olive oil or butter to the puff pastry.
I pretty much followed the format of the recipe, with the exception of prebaking the shells for about 15 minutes. I then removed them from the oven, removed the "tops", stuffed with the ingredients and then baked for another 5-10 minutes.
As mentioned before, it's an easy dish and as long as you've got some puff pastry in the freezer...these can be jazzed up with any number of ingredients and prepared quickly, should you suddenly have someone stop by or as a tasty snack.
Thanks and have a great day!
Sun-Dried Tomato-Parmesan Crisps (or Shells)
- 3 tablespoons sun-dried tomato paste (or regular tomato paste)
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- *3 cloves of garlic minced
- *1/2 cup chopped baby portobello mushrooms
- *1/4 cup pignoli nuts, chopped
- All-purpose flour, for dusting
- 1 piece store-bought puff pastry, thawed
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees, with oven rack in center position.
In a small bowl, combine sun-dried tomato paste and olive oil, garlic, mushrooms and pignoli nuts.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out puff pastry to 12-inch square. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Spread tomato paste mixture evenly over puff pastry with a rubber spatula. Top with cheese and black pepper. Using a pizza wheel, cut into quarters in one direction and sixths in the other to yield 24 pieces.
Bake 20 to 22 minutes until puffed and golden. Let cool to room temperature on cooling rack before serving....enjoy.