Puff pastry is a special, wonderful dough, made very light and flaky by successive rollings and butterings. It's very time consuming and will build strong arm muscles.... that's why we prefer to buy it already made up in neat little boxes called Filo Dough. Gordon Food Service on Groesbeck carries them as well as most of the local Italian markets. There are hundreds of different creations you can make with filo dough from salmon in puff pastry, to hors d'oeuvres to wrapping it around hot dogs (tell your kids it's beef wellington). One of the easiest and most delicious hors d'oeuvres is Pinwheels. You can make them up ahead of time and freeze them whole. For a tray of munchies, you'll need:
one sheet puff pastry (or filo dough)
1/2 TB oregano
1/2 TB sweet basil
1/2 TB granulated garlic
3 oz. ham, thin slices
3 oz. provolone cheese, thin slices
Thaw out the puff pastry if frozen. When it is soft, lay out one sheet. Sprinkle it with salt and herbs. Put a thin layer of ham on next, followed by a thin layer of provolone cheese. Roll up the dough. Slice the "log" into one inch pieces. Line an oven tray with baking paper and place the wheels on it flat, so you can see the swirly design. Bake in a 350 degree oven until they are golden brown. Once you master these you can move on to those luscious Napoleons (called Mille Feuille; pronounced meel' foy by the French and meaning 1000 leaves--of puff pastry!) that ooze with thick whipped cream. And as always, a creative cook is a good cook.