Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Filo Dough Help... Somewhat last minute!


feedmec00kies
 Share

Recommended Posts

So, being crazy/adventurous/overachieving, I thought of something to make to bring to my boyfriend's mother's house for Thanksgiving that I haven't made before. She asked for an appetizer, so I thought up something that won't be too hard involving zucchini, yellow squash, parsnips, and phyllo/filo dough (plus seasonings and some balsamic vinegar reduction). The gist of it would be that the vegetables will be sliced thin, stacked together with salt, pepper, herbs, and oil, and roasted in the oven until soft.

Since I haven't had time to buy the ingredients a few days ago and do a test run, I'm wondering if anyone can answer the following question for me, as I am inexperienced dealing with filo dough...

If I wish/need to prepare the dish tonight (he and I are going to his mom's house first thing tomorrow morning to help her prepare, and it'll probably be good to let the veggies sit together cooked overnight), should I:

A. Bake the filo dough and cook the vegetables seperately, and put it all together later (like a half hour before serving).

B. Cook it together tonight, sogginess be damned.

C. Something I haven't thought of yet.

Sogginess is the main issue for me. I'm also wondering if the veggies could use a little salting before they get cooked to try and draw some of the liquid out beforehand... :huh:

Any and all help will be greatly appreciated!

"I know it's the bugs, that's what cheese is. Gone off milk with bugs and mould - that's why it tastes so good. Cows and bugs together have a good deal going down."

- Gareth Blackstock (Lenny Henry), Chef!

eG Ethics Signatory

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow, you're daring feedmec00kies :smile:.

Veggies definitely need to be cook ahead ... and parsnips probably take a bit longer than the squashes. I would think some sort of cheese would go a good way toward binding the veggies. Filo is a somewhat demanding product - at least when I've used it is has been, 'cause I'm a bit of a klutz. But the advantage is it can be made ahead (tonight) and cooked later (tomorrow). Or you can just cook the veggies tonight and put it together tomorrow - find a nice piece of counter top as it take space to do.

Google any number of sites for best tips on handling...I found stuff like this:

The tricky part is when you stretch the phyllo dough when you make your own -- you don't want to puncture it when it becomes paper thin. Remove all hand and wrist jewelry and turn rings stone side into palm when stretching. Use the back of your hands, particularly your knuckles, to stretch it. And be sure to place the stretched dough over a dry towel on the table so that you can roll it up easily.

It's on a baking website here.

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I take it you will roast the veggies first no matter what as the summer squashes will leach out alot of moisture? Also parsnip will take longer than the squashes. Is the balsamic reduction a "sauce" over top or in the veggie mix? You could roast first (start parsnip first) then add the juices to the balsamic as it reduces to capture flavor. Phyllo is not brain surgery but if you are in a hot kitchen where a turkey is being done, etc, it make go to either extreme- sticky or over-dry. What is the shape and size of each piece or are you making a tart type? Details would help us help you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, some more information:

First off, I'm cheating. I forgot to mention I bought pre-made filo dough for this little project. I figure I'm not completely suicidal, and I also somewhat lack space in my apartment to set upon that kind of adventure. I'm leaving that for another time. :smile: Also why I figured that it wasn't quite so necessary to post in the pastry forum.

I was looking for easy to pick up since this is an appetizer, so I bought these little metal tart things for about 30 cents each (actually, I got them 20% off, hehe) at Bed Bath and Beyond to use to form the shells. The bottom of them is a little less than 2 inches across. I have no ruler, so that bottle cap will have to suffice as reference.

gallery_55197_4949_84086.jpg

I'm not going to make the shell thing too perfectly - rustic is the new black, right? - and just cut the filo dough big enough to fit the metal shell things. Maybe trim off some of that excess dough.

Good point about the parsnips, BTW. I would probably have forgotten that. I also failed to mention that I was thinking of also adding a little fresh fig as well, and that'll have to go in last minute, like when I warm these puppies up, or right before I take everything out of the oven when I cook them the first time.

Heidih, good idea about the balsamic and the veggies juices. I'm just going to drizzle a little reduced balsamic on the finished product, so I can certainly mix in the veggie juices.

Weinoo: cheese is not an option, unfortunately. A significant number of my boyfriend's family members are lactose intolerant, so I'm trying to accommodate that. There's also 2 vegetarians (one of whom is one of the lactose intolerant people) and a family friend who is severely allergic to nuts (he might or might not have an issue with my thing; I didn't examine the filo dough too vigorously for that yet). So yeah, part of my ambitiousness is trying to accommodate all that. Although, I am actually thinking of putting a tiny bit of prosciutto on the top of some of them, making it obvious for the vegetarians what's safe... Or I could just eat it all myself. Heeheehee. :raz:

That information help?

(edited to insert picture)

Edited by feedmec00kies (log)

"I know it's the bugs, that's what cheese is. Gone off milk with bugs and mould - that's why it tastes so good. Cows and bugs together have a good deal going down."

- Gareth Blackstock (Lenny Henry), Chef!

eG Ethics Signatory

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Umm, cook your little tartlette dooeys upside down. I love rustic filo stuff. Y'know, slather each layer with butter and use scissors or a cutter and place your filo over the upturned tart cup thing. Then you can put the veggies in on site. I'd not only cut them thin I'd dice them. Or slice thin then cut them with a cookie cutter so they can be layered in sweetly. Maybe something like that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I kinda forgot about the layering part of filo dough for a bit, and then remembered it when I was reading the handy link weinoo posted. I think I'm going to use olive oil. Should I be using a different kind of oil?

Also, this website I'm looking at mentions using clarified butter. Is this safe? Or should I not risk it?

Edited by feedmec00kies (log)

"I know it's the bugs, that's what cheese is. Gone off milk with bugs and mould - that's why it tastes so good. Cows and bugs together have a good deal going down."

- Gareth Blackstock (Lenny Henry), Chef!

eG Ethics Signatory

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I use olive oil sometimes. It works well in savory stuff but I don't think I'd try it in baklava. I was in a hurry and was making a lot of fillo somethings. I put olive oil in a sprayer bottle and made short work of the fillo. Now I use it for anything that doesn't need to have real butter.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've made vegan phyllo pastries with olive oil. They don't crisp up like the butter ones do, I'm assuming b/c of the lack of protein, but they're not terrible. They're fine right out of the oven and piping hot, then they start to get soggy.

You may want to check with your lactose-intolerant folks -most people don't realize that hard cheeses and some other dairy products contain very little lactose (it's all been converted in the aging process) and is suitable for lactose-intolerant folks.

You definitely want to blind-bake the phyllo shells. They will get soggy regardless (because of the lack of butter) but if you blind-bake them, then fill them and re-bake on site they should hold up well enough.

You also should cook your vegetable mix first and make it as dry as possible. Perhaps roast the vegetables separately rather than stewing them together. Then drain, combine, fold in your balsamic reduction, and top each pastry with a sliver of fig. Sounds good!

Edited by david coonce (log)

"A culture's appetite always springs from its poor" - John Thorne

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Whoops I missed the lactose intolerant part--well skip the butter part I  guess then? I guess filo with olive oil is ok--never tried it.

Olive oil is what I use when making pseudo empanadas with phyllo- very puffy and crispy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I kinda forgot about the layering part of filo dough for a bit, and then remembered it when I was reading the handy link weinoo posted. I think I'm going to use olive oil. Should I be using a different kind of oil?

Also, this website I'm looking at mentions using clarified butter. Is this safe? Or should I not risk it?

For this rustic tart you don't have to oil/butter every layer - just get a good bit in overall between the layers.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the help everyone!

I did the shells the morning of, before we took the train up to my boyfriend's mom's house (speaking of which, early afternoon on Thanksgiving at Grand Central is absolute hell!), blind baking them with little foil-wrapped packets of uncooked rice to help them keep their shape. I did end up using oil, and it worked fine; I flavored the oil a bit (the night before, so it was cool) with thyme.

Everyone seemed to enjoy them very much, and it was nice and light; especially good when everyone's munching and waiting to stuff themselves to the brim with food!

"I know it's the bugs, that's what cheese is. Gone off milk with bugs and mould - that's why it tastes so good. Cows and bugs together have a good deal going down."

- Gareth Blackstock (Lenny Henry), Chef!

eG Ethics Signatory

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...