My mom says that Trader Joe’s should pay me because I talk about their food so much. I can’t help it! They sell tasty products that are fairly inexpensive! Besides, they already have a stellar marketing department. I wouldn’t know about half the things I enjoy if it wasn’t for the flyers and circulars they mail out, complete with handy dandy shopping checklists.
I am a big fan of things you can just throw together and it magically turns into something to serve. Bonus points if they are items that can sit in the freezer or pantry until you need them.
So, Trader Joe’s sells this puff pastry in the freezer case. One box, two sheets of puff pastry. You know it has to be good and natural because TJ is not big on preservatives and yucky chemicals. On a shopping trip, I picked one up and stuck it in the freezer until I had a good idea of what to make with it. I also still had apples from the Costco pack, and even though I had purchased them for the Pre-Thanksgiving Dinner (yes, that long ago), they were still good, if maybe a little less crisp. But, I didn’t want to just do a simple apple-on-puff-pastry kind of tart. How boring!
There was also a small can of almond paste on the counter. I had pulled it out, optimistically thinking I would invest time into a batch of croissants over Christmas and then be able to turn the “old” ones into yummy almond croissants. Well, the croissants never happened, but perhaps I could still use up the almond paste.
This is one of the easiest desserts I’ve ever done (easier than my tiramisu!) and it’s tasty and justifiable as a breakfast treat, too! Here’s how it’s done:
Ingredients: 1 puff pastry sheet, 2 apples, 1 can almond paste, 1 egg
Directions: Defrost the puff pastry sheet on a baking sheet. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. With a handheld mixer, beat the almond paste with the egg (don’t worry, eventually it will come together and make a smooth paste). Spread this on the puff pastry. [ed. note: you will only need half this amount, but the other half freezes wonderfully] Peel the apples, slice in half, then remove the cores. Thinly slice the apples and fan them onto the almond paste. Bake for 15 minutes or until the puff pastry starts to brown. Remove, cool, slice, and try to refrain from eating the whole thing by yourself.
Ta da! I wish I had a picture to show you, but it’s all gone. Sorry.