Homemade strawberry “pop-tart” pastries are a sweet treat for any occasion. Warm jam and fresh strawberries stuffed inside of a buttery and flaky puff pastry is perfect for breakfast, brunch or dessert. They look pretty and taste even better.
- 1 pound unsalted butter, divided, at room temperature
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 3/ 4 tablespoon salt
- 7 ounces cold water
- 1 pound strawberries
- 1/ 2 lemon
- 8 heaping tablespoons orange marmalade, or strawberry jam
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons divided water
- 2 tablespoons apricot jam
Make the butter block: Take 3 sticks of butter plus 2 tablespoons; set the remaining 6 tablespoons aside. On a sheet of parchment paper, unwrap the butter and lay the sticks side by side so that they touch. In the center of your square of butter, add the 2 tablespoons of butter on top.
Cover your butter with another sheet of parchment paper. Using a rolling pin, you will gently hit the top of the butter until it starts to form a homogenous square. To keep the shape you will want to use your hands, rolling pin or a bench scraper to push the sides of the butter back into a square shape. The goal is to have your butter in a even square/rectangle shape that is between ¼ and ⅓ inch thick and about 3 inches long on each side.
Once your butter is formed, wrap it up in your parchment paper and place it back into the refrigerator so that it can firm up in it's new shape while you make the dough.
Make the dough: Attach the paddle attachment to your stand mixer and add the flour and salt to your bowl. On slow, combine the dry ingredients until evenly distributed.
Melt the remaining butter. With speed on medium-low, slowly add in the melted butter and ice cold water so that you finish adding them at the same time. Mix the dough together until it forms into a ball.
Dust your counter with flour. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead it on the counter for a couple of minutes. Then form the dough into a ball. Score an "x" on the top with a knife. Wrap it in parchment paper or plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to rest for about 20 minutes (you can rest it longer or even overnight if you want to do these steps early).
Make the puff pastry: Take the butter block and dough out of the refrigerator and set it out for about 5-10 minutes to take the chill off. You want the butter to be firm but soft enough to leave a fingerprint when touched.
Sprinkle the counter with flour, and place your ball of dough in front of you so that the "x" is now a cross, this will make rolling the dough out easier.
Roll out the dough using the guides created by the scored cross. Place your rolling pin so that the scored mark is in the center and roll the dough out. You will want to create 4 "petals," leaving a little extra dough in the middle.
Dust the top of your dough with flour and place your butter block in the middle, on top of the extra dough hump so that the sides of the block line up with the "petals." Fold the "petal" flaps over the butter like you're wrapping a present. Flip it over so that it's seam side down on a floured surface.
Roll the dough into a long rectangle, keeping the same width it has now. Make sure to work fast enough to keep butter and dough firm and not too soft. If your dough or butter ever get too soft, place back in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to firm back up. Roll the dough out 6 times (each time is called a "book", in my experience you can roll it out about 2 times before it will need to rest in the refrigerator. *Should dough break allowing butter to come out, sprinkle the butter with some flour and keep rolling. Once the rectangle is formed you can fold the the dough so that the butter has the opportunity to be reincorporated.
Once it is rolled out, you will need to fold it in thirds - hamburger style not hot dog. This is one book. You will want to repeat this step 5 more times for a total of 6 books. Always starting seam side down, walk out the dough, roll it out, fold in thirds. Once your 6 books are complete, rest one more time.
Making the Pop Tart Pastry: Divide your puff pastry into two and roll them both out to about ¼ inch thick, keeping somewhat of a rectangle shape. Place them in the freezer for about 15-20 minutes until firm.
While they are in the freezer, thinly slice your strawberries and lightly squeeze juice from ½ of lemon on top and set aside.
Mix together your egg and 1 tablespoon of water to create an egg wash. Set aside.
Working with one at a time, take one dough sheet from the freezer. Trim the sides so that it's a rectangle shape. Cut down the middle creating two long rectangles. Cut those two rectangles in the middle, creating four squares, then cut those in the middle so that you have 8 even rectangles from the pastry dough. Line your sheet pan with parchment paper and lay down your pastry bottoms.
Fill each bottom with a spoonful of jam of your choice. I did 4 with orange marmalade and 4 with strawberry jam. Make sure to leave a border around the edges. Brush on the egg wash around the edges. Place your strawberries on top of the jam.
Repeat with the remaining dough.
Brush egg wash over each pastry. Make sure to add the egg wash after you cut the lattice. Place pastries back in the freezer for 15 minutes. While you wait, preheat your oven to 400ºF.
Take the pastries out of the freezer and trim the edges. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn down your oven to 350ºF then bake for another 20 minutes.
While the pastries bake, over medium low heat, melt 2 spoonfuls of apricot jam with 1 tablespoon water. Brush this over the finished pastries for extra shine.