This is the day where my practice paid off, everyone.
This was another request from my parents, who decided to have my family over for dinner one night. It was my aunt’s birthday, so my mom wanted me to make some sort of dessert. My aunt tends to pass on dessert on any other occasion, so I was skeptical about this, and figured I would make something that was dessert-like, but not sickeningly sweet like most treats usually associated with birthdays.
So, what did I do? I Googled “fruit dessert recipes,” of course. I looked through a few pies and things before finding a pretty cool-looking apricot and blackberry turnover. My family loves blackberries, so I thought it would be perfect. I knew it was going to be a little ambitious for my level of cooking ability, even though it was pretty much just making sauce and folding it into a puff pastry. My skill set is limited.
Anyway, here are the ingredients for (my version of) apricot-blackberry turnovers. This is a doubled recipe, which will make about 12-14 turnovers:
- 3 medium-sized packages of blackberries
- 2 16 oz. cans of halved apricots (6 fresh apricots pealed and diced, if you’re feeling fancy)
- 4 tablespoons of sugar
- A dash of vanilla (I used liquid, but other recipes recommend ground vanilla)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in 4 tablespoons water
- 2 packages of puff pastry.
- Powdered sugar
For the first step, pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees. As a tip: my puff pastries were frozen when I got them, so I just laid them out on a baking sheet on top of the oven where I wasn’t cooking things and let them thaw out a bit from the heat.
To make the apricot spread that goes inside the turnover, first dice up the apricots and throw them in a saucepan to begin heating up. Next, add the sugar and vanilla, and cook until everything is dissolved and the apricots get very mushy.
Add in the corn starch after the apricots fall apart and then cook until everything starts to thicken. Make sure that the correct amount of corn starch is added in. For mine, I doubled the recipe as I said, so there needs to be a bit more corn starch to really get the mixture to thicken up.
Next, lay out the thawed puff pastry onto a backing pan and cut it into even squares. Mine actually turned out a little smaller than they were supposed to, so make sure they are big enough to fit a good amount of the apricot spread in there, plus a few whole blackberries. Before putting anything onto the pastry, poke multiple holes in it with a fork.
After that, spread the apricot mix onto half of the pastry, leaving room at the edges for it to be sealed. Then, place a few blackberries inside. This dessert can be sweet or tart depending on how many blackberries are added. Fewer blackberries leads to a sweeter treat, so I tended to only add two. Plus, it all depends on how much will fit inside when the pastry is folded over. In some cases, when taking mine out of the oven, the blackberries had fallen out because I added too many and stretched the pastry too thin.
Fold over the other half of the pastry and seal it by pressing the edges with a fork. This process was pretty time-consuming for me because of the size of my pastries. I had to stretch them slightly in order to make things fold over, but in the end it didn’t change much.
Bake for about 15-18 minutes or until browned. The pastries should be puffed up, and don’t worry if a bit of the apricot filling spills out.
Finish things off with a sprinkling of powdered sugar and there it is! A treat that will satisfy a sweet tooth without inducing a massive sugar rush. Also, it goes great with some vanilla ice cream on a hot day.