This sugary treat has long been associated with sexual desire – it was even referred to as the nectar of the Goddess of Love, Aphrodite.
Try it in: Honey-Ginger Apple Croustades
Makes: Six 3 1/2-inch croustades
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus about 2 tablespoons melted butter for glazing
1 1/4 pounds apples (about 5 medium, like Braeburns and Fujis), peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks to make about 5 cups
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt
1 sheet (about 9 ounces) frozen puff pastry, thawed
1. Heat the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat until sizzling, then add the apples and toss to coat. Sauté until a lot of the moisture has steamed off and the apples start to soften and brown, 8 to 10 minutes.
2. Add the honey, ginger, cinnamon, and salt and toss to blend. Taste and add more of any of these flavorings if you like. Set aside to cool.
3. On a lightly floured counter, roll the pastry into a 10-by-15-inch rectangle. Cut into six 5-by-5-inch squares, then trim off the corners of each square to make a rough round.
4. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
5. Arrange the pastry rounds on a baking sheet and prick each one at 1/2-inch intervals. Portion the apple filling evenly among the pastry rounds, leaving about a 1/2-inch border of pastry. Wet the border with a little water and loosely pleat it to create an edge that embraces the apples; the pastry won’t cover the center of the apple filling. Brush the edge with some of the melted butter.
6. Bake the croustades until the pastry is pale gold and set, about 18 minutes; brush a little more butter onto the pastry and continue baking until the pastry is puffed and a rich golden brown on the border and undersides (lift one to check), another 5 to 7 minutes.
7. Slide the croustades onto a cooling rack. Let cool for at least 15 minutes or up to 1 hour before serving.
Photo: Puff Cookbook / Ngoc Minh Ngo