One thing I always have in the freezer is a packet of puff pastry because there are so many quick options for whipping up a snack or meal using it.
A favourite in our household are puff pastry pinwheels both sweet and savoury. They can be made with a few simple ingredients or dressed up with some gourmet additions and toppings.
Before we get into the toppings, here is the basic recipe for how to make pinwheels.
How To Make Pinwheels
Turn the oven on to preheat to 200C (390F) while assembling the pinwheels. Line a baking tray (or trays) with baking paper and set them aside.
Now, get your ingredients ready – puff pastry and toppings.
1. Defrost puff pastry sheets
Remove as many as you think will be required from the freezer and allow to thaw for 10-15 minutes (maybe more depending on temperature). Remember, pinwheels are best eaten on the day they are prepared (but can also be eaten the next day) so don’t prepare too many.
2. Add the toppings
Spread the pastry sheets with the desired topping…
…and roll up firmly. Make sure the edge of the pastry is sealed or the pinwheels won’t hold together well. This can be done by just brushing along the edge with a bit of water or milk and pushing gently with your finger. It should look like this…
Now, one trick with the pinwheels is taking a bit of care when rolling them (I’ve learnt this from experience). You don’t want them too tight as there needs to be a little room for the puff pastry to expand. On the other hand, you don’t want them too loose or they will spread and not stand nice and upright when cooked. Here’s an example of a ‘spreading’ pinwheel…
They still taste great but just don’t look as pretty. Once the pastry is rolled and sealed, cut it with a sharp knife into quarters and put the pinwheels onto prepared baking tray. You might need to gently reshape them so they are nice and round (I didn’t do a great job at that)…
Put them into the oven and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until nice and golden. Once ready, remove them and allow to cool slightly before serving. Or, if eating later, allow them to cool on a wire rack.
Here are a few suggestions for pinwheel topping to get you started. Most are ingredients that are usually on hand and will be quick and easy to use.
- Vegemite and cheese (these are featured in the photos above)
- Pesto (any type) and cheese
- Diced ham or bacon and cheese
- Tomato paste, cheese and herbs
- Chopped olives, sundried tomatoes and feta cheese
- Tomato, onion and bacon
- Bolognaise sauce
- Jam and desiccated coconut (photo at the top)
- Peanut butter and jam
- Stewed apple, sultanas and cinnamon
- Lemon butter
- Butter (melted), cinnamon and dried fruit
Puff pastry pinwheels are a great addition to the family recipe file. You can serve them when entertaining, dish them up for a quick snack and even use them in lunchboxes. Have fun, experiment with the toppings and enjoy!
Please feel free to leave any topping suggestions below – I’d love to hear them. Also, don’t forget to share with your friends using the buttons below.