First comes the year retrospective in pictures. Then, the predictions for the new year, followed closely by the trends. For people, like me who like lists, the start of any year, is the equivalent of a fortnight in heaven. Time to reflect and to get a frisson of excitement for things to come.
Reading across the board from consumers magazines to trade newspapers, I picked up a few recurring words: Retro-dishes, Home-smoking, Gourmet... 2016 should see us cure our own bacon, fish etc.... which by the way, I did last year with fantastic results; and we should see the word gourmet appearing more and more, gourmet cans will be stacked on supermarket shelves and gourmet doughnuts are on the cards.
A supermarket-magazine went as far as asking, "Will Gourmet Doughnut be the new Cupcake?" probably not a riveting question neither was, "Will savoury doughnut cross the Altlantic."
I am less concerned by the arrival of parsnip doughnuts than by the fact that savoury dessert have long been part of our repertoires therefore why call savoury biscuits, vegetable cakes, muffins and scone, "New Trend?
One recipe which fit in the "savoury dessert" category though technically is a starter or a canapé is Savoury Palmiers. Found in Jane Lovett "Make it easy", I couldn't resist.
As a kid, I was not a great fan of Palmiers. They always seemed like a lesser choice, something to get out of a packet for a snack but not in a Boulangerie where Meringues-en-chemise and mille-feuilles were so much more enticing. If these elegant sweet and buttery puff pastries aren't still my favourites, It's another matter when it comes to their savoury counterparts.
Savoury Palmiers with Parma Ham 'n Parmesan
- Dijon mustard
- 1 packet of ready roll puff pastry
- 2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, plus a little extra
- 6 slices of Parma ham
- 1 egg, beaten with a pinch of salt
I would advise you to have a look at the folding techniques on You Tube before starting but basically
1- Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6
2- Unroll the puff pastry with the long edge near you. cut into two. Give it a quarter turn so that the long edge still faces you.
3- Cover each half with a thin layer of mustard, then comes the parmesan, then the parma ham.
4- Work with one half at the time. Fold the long sides by 2.5 cms. brush with the beaten egg. Fold again so that the two halves meet. Brush again with egg and fold one last time.
5- Wrap in cling film and refrigerate for an hour
6- Cut the ends and cut 0.5cm slices and spread them on a tray covered with greased paper. Grate a little parmesan on the top.
7- Cook for 10 minutes. Leave them to cool.
Palmiers can be frozen
Palmiers can be frozen