Pinterest is like crack for anyone who likes to cook, bake, craft, decorate, dress, breathe... you know, pretty much everyone.
My girls and I are no exception.
We are hooked.
Matéa was home with strep, so we decide to find something new to bake.... from Pinterest, of course. My kids LOVE pop tarts. Me, not so much. I think they taste like cardboard and are full of preservatives and other nasty things. A possible answer? Homemade pop tarts. I found a few recipes and decided to use parts of 2.
Homemade Pop Tarts
1-1/2 cups white whole wheat flour (I use Trader Joe's, but Costco also carries an all-purpose unbleached flour that I have used in a pinch)
1/2 cup oats (I use old-fashioned, but quick-cooking would work, too)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/3 cup cold or frozen shortening
2 TBS cold butter cut into small pieces
1/3 cup buttermilk (I use a scant 1/3 cup milk with white vinegar or lemon juice added to make it 1/3 cup total - let sit for 5 min before using)
2 - 1 gallon zip seal bags
1. Combine oatmeal, flour, salt & sugar in food processor or other type of hand mixer or chopper (I have a Braun - LOVE IT) - combine to mix. Add shortening and butter and mix - it should be coarse - you should see lumps. In a separate bowl, whisk egg and butter milk (or substitute). Pour over flour mixture and mix to combine. Use hands to press dough together and form a ball.
2. Divide dough in half and place each half in separate gallon bag. Place dough in center, remove air and seal/zip. Roll out dough in bag making it as even as possible and filling the entire bag. You will need to open bag to remove air periodically - reclose and keep rolling. Hold bag up to see if dough is evenly distributed. Flip to other side and remove wrinkles and air. Place dough flat in freezer. Repeat with other bag/dough ball.
3. Make filling. Two options are cinnamon sugar or a fruit.
Cinnamon sugar - combine 1/3 cup brown sugar, 1-1/2 tsp flour & 1-1/2 tsp cinnamon
Fruit - c0mbine 1 TBS cornstarch with 1 TBS water; combine with 3/4 cup jam/jelly/preserves in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and stir for 2 minutes. Allow to cool.
4. When frozen, remove one bag from freezer. Let warm just a bit - you don't want it to crack or break. Using a ruler and sharpie, mark off 4 strips the long way and 3 the short way - to make 12 rectangles. I just put a small dot on each side. Use a ruler and pizza cutter to lightly score the lines. You will have 4 long strips marked off in 3 equal parts. Cut off all 4 sides of the bag and then cut each strip - ending up with 12 rectangles with plastic on each side. Put rectangles back in the freezer and repeat with the second bag. Keep in freezer until completely hard again.
5.Cover 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Remove 12 frozen rectangles from freezer. Remove plastic wrap and place 6 on each cookie sheet. Place a spoonful of filling in the middle of each rectangle (we did 6 cinnamon sugar and 6 blackberry - adjust filling recipe if needed). Remove remaining 12 rectangles from freezer and remove plastic wrap. Place on top of filled rectangles. Seal with a fork on all 4 sides and prick 3 times across top.
6. To freeze for later - flash freeze on cookie sheet. When frozen hard, cut paper around each pop tart and place in freezer container with paper still attached. When ready to bake, place pop tart with parchment paper attached directly on cookie sheet and bake immediately.
7. To bake now - place in preheated 420 degree oven for 15-20 minutes. I found that 15 minutes was plenty with the white whole wheat flour. Allow to cool on wire rack.
8. Frost when cool - 1/2 cup powdered sugar, 1 tsp butter, scant TBS milk, dash of vanilla - combine and stir until smooth.
1. I was a bit overwhelmed before starting, but using the bags to roll the pastry was the key. I have a pastry/pie crust disorder and usually avoid anything similar. This was easy - but only because I am a bit anal and used a ruler to measure before scoring the lines. It would have been all kinds of crazy if I had eye-balled a straight line. All kinds.
2. We loved the cinnamon sugar and blackberry equally as much. I will try other kinds of good quality jams, too. I used Trader Joe's for this batch.
3. I love my Braun mini mixer/chopper and recommend it to everyone. I use it almost every day. I am sure a food processor is great - but my Braun can make drinks, too!
4. It seems like a lot of work for only 12 pop tarts. I will definitely double the recipe next time and freeze a portion to bake later.