These pastry casings for bouchées a la reine or vol-au-vent seem daunting but actually they are easy to prepare. All is needed is puff pastry and 2 different sizes cutter. You can make your own puff pastry or buy already made. These casings can be used for many savory fillings liaise with a sauce, my favorite is with mushrooms but you can use prawns, mixed and finely diced vegetables or even poached eggs. It is up to your imagination to decide how you want to served them. Try making vol-au-vent using the filling for my recipe for mushroom gougère.
I must say that in Nairobi you can buy freshly made puff pastry from some bakeries. The workmanship is very good but the taste is not comparable to, noblesse oblige, a real all butter puff pastry.
- Puff pastry – see my post
- Egg wash (egg mix with a little water)
- Cut two rounds of the same size. The size of the cutter will be decided by the use for the end product . Will it be for an entry, an appetizer?
- Cut out the center, with a smaller pastry cutter, of one of the round and keep it aside.
- With your finger put egg wash all around one of the full round and put the round with the hollow center on top
- Put egg wash on top of the cut out center. Never put egg wash on the side of a puff pastry casing
- Place the casings on a baking sheet lined with grease proof paper in an 180 Celsius oven. Bake for about 20 minutes or until cooked and golden. I like my casings to be cooked inside.
Notice the inside is cooked and the cover has well risen.