Case in point, I'd forgotten that I made crock pot bread until I jumped back on today to share this recipe and saw that I'd made it when my stove gave up the ghost. Someday, I hope to have my full faculties back. Today is not that day.
I love strudel. Crispy on the outside, sweet filling on the inside. I do not love the amount of time and effort that goes into a really good one, so I've come up with a cheater recipe. It is seriously one of the easiest things I've ever baked. It doesn't hurt that it looks totally impressive and tastes delicious.
The secrets are frozen puff pastry and jarred jam. Add in some sweetened cream cheese and you feel like a pastry chef.
So, here is all you need:
1 frozen puff pastry (thawed according to directions)
4oz cream cheese, softened
2 TBSP sugar
1 tsp vanilla
4 TBSP jam (I used seedless blackberry, but any flavor works)
|You see how I snagged the first piece before my kids even knew it was out of the oven?|
Preheat the oven to 375°. Place the thawed pastry on a piece of parchment paper large enough to fit a jelly roll pan. Using a rolling pin or flat-sided glass, roll it out to about 12"x16". Gently lift the parchment and pastry onto a jelly roll pan. Slice each side into one inch wide strips, leaving the center third for the filling.
Mix the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla in a small bowl until smooth. Spread down the middle of the pastry. Top this with the jam, spreading until smooth.
Criss cross the strips, alternating sides. Seal up the ends by crimping them together. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
We especially enjoy this while warm, topped with homemade whipped cream.
This is one of those goodies that can come together in about 30 minutes. It's great for busy weeknight desserts, unexpected visitors, or lazy Saturday morning breakfasts.