It's important to do things in life that we don't like doing, because we feel good after doing them, knowing we're not doing them anymore. That's essentially the motivation I have to make laminate pastry dough. It's very much worth the effort, of course.
I used a recipe from the Great British Baking Show, the Cheats Rough Puff Pastry, and substituted vegan Earth Balance margarine for butter. Say what you want about vegan butters, but using a bit of it at room temperature, and a bit of it frozen, grating it onto the dough, covers all the bases when it comes to producing a flaky texture. If you are careful with time and temperature, this recipe really turns out, and you can use it for some fancy things.
- 1200 g (2-2/3 lbs) plain flour
- pinch salt
- 200g (7 oz butter), chilled and cut into cubes
- 480g (14 oz butter), frozen
- Mix the flour and salt together in a bowl. Rub in the chilled butter using your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Gradually add enough water to form a dough (about 1 to 1-1/2 cups of water).
- Roll the dough out into a rectangle on a lightly floured work surface.
- Grate half of the frozen butter over the bottom two thirds of the dough. Fold down the top third and fold up the bottom third as if folding a letter.
- Turn the folded dough through 90 degrees and roll it out into a rectangle again. Repeat the process of adding the remaining frozen butter and fold as before.
- Wrap the dough in cling film and leave to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes before using.
I made a stromboli in a 3 quart cast iron pot. As long as you have the dough rolled out to 1/2-inch thickness, it should take about 30-40 minutes to bake and reach a golden brown color. Thicker than that, and you risk having raw spots inside, especially baking something with a filling.
I intend to use it for sweet items for Wednesday Evening Cookies.