Crispy, layered, puffed vol-au-vent pastry is the perfect vessel for a savory or sweet filling. The chili and tuna filled appetizers are great whether made as small finger food or a larger appetizer.
By Jehanne Ali
Vol-au-vents were one of the many baking expiriments that I recall from my childhood. Of course I did not know what vol-au-vents were at 10 year old, but I did remember the fillings that my mother used for most of her pastries. Usually chicken and potato leftover from her curry puffs, and sometimes sardines in a can which required no cooking. Then when tuna hit the market in ready-to-eat packs that became her glamorous choice, spiced with a bit of chili for the adults. Those days shop-bought pastry was impossible to find in the supermarket, and my mom was all keen anyway to show off her pastry prowess.
It’s only when I have leisure time at hand that I do laminated dough from scratch. When it comes to vol-au-vents, shape does matter. Use fluted cookie cutter if you have one, cut 2 circles and cut out a round hole from one of the circle. So you will have the base and a doughnut top, stack them together and bake at high degree ( 200 C) et voila, you get puffed up cases! Vol-au-vents literally means ‘flight int he wind’ and I am assuming that it’s due to its puffy look that it was called that.
- 1 pack frozen puff pastry dough ( around 250g )
- 1 can tuna in brine
- ½ tsp chili powder ( more if you like it spicier )
- 1 small red onion, diced finely
- 1 small stalk parsely, chopped finely
- 2 tbsp tomato ketchup
- a dash of black pepper
- a pinch of salt
- 1 egg- mixed with 2 tbsp water for egg wash
- Preheat the oven to 200 C.
- Thaw the frozen pastry on kitchen counter until it is more malleable to rolling.
- Roll it out to ½ inch thickness and cut out circles.
- Pair 2 circles together.
- Punch out smaller hole in one of the 2 circles then stack this on top of the base.
- Brush with egg wash then bake for 18 to 20 minutes until golden.
- Prepare the filling.
- In a bowl, combine the tuna with chili powder, onion, parsley, tomato ketchup, black pepper and salt.
- Once the vol au vents are ready, fill the tuna in the middle then serve warm.