Bacon and cheese bechamel turnover,beyond comfort food
As party season approaches, so does the likelihood of waking up with a hangover –a word or two of advice( O cozinheiro´s cure). If you’ve done your binge drinking on a school night and you have no choice but to report to an office, you need Ibuprofen 600mg, the breakfast sandwich of your choosing, and my condolences.
If its the weekend then you need the sodium of tomato juice, the sinus-clearing action of horseradish, the shame-erasing magic of vodka (tequila if you want to make it a Bloody Maria).
Back in the day when I commuted to an office, my strict no drinking on a school night rule did not always work, sometimes getting widdly was unavoidable.So often following a boozy one in London with colleagues and clients, I found myself feeling a little peaky as I stepped out of the tube station the next day. After a hard weeks graft, that project of the last 6 months had come to fruition,it was Friday night and we were all in the mood to celebrate our job well done. I didn’t drink that much in all honesty (2 pints of beer and always avoided the ‘bottle of wine in a glass’ variant ) but it’s a sad fact that I used to get terrible hangovers, hence the rule.
"when the going gets tough the tough go to Greggs"
|Folhado misto,tudo bem!!!!|
So what is it about naughty foods that does that? Old-school wisdom preaches reaching for cold cheesy pizza or a greasy bacon and tomato sandwich to "soak up" the alcohol.The importance of getting some morning-after food in your stomach cannot be overstated. And while the bacon-egg-and-cheese is a nearly perfect food item, but getting one also requires leaving home, and that's just not going to happen when the struggle is real,or your hangover falls on a weekend.
And while I can’t say this is the hangover cure the world has been waiting for (maybe I should have ordered two...), it is seriously delicious and worth every calorific bite. I decided to replicate the go to Greggs cure in the privacy of my own kitchen.
My version is very easy to make — especially on account of using ready rolled puff pastry (life’s too short to make your own, I feel). I made a very simple béchamel using butter, milk and flour, mixed with a little strong Dijon mustard and a carefree handful of strong vintage cheddar cheese, spooned it over puff pastry squares and topped it with a couple of slices of pancetta (though smoked streaky bacon would work perfectly too) folding it over on itself and baking until puffed up and golden.
Now, lets get down to the clever stuff. While assembling these pastries is easy, they may still prove too traumatic to contemplate making while suffering after that tell tale good night out.Instead, make a batch ahead, once cooled they’ll keep in an airtight tin for a few days (or indeed the freezer) and will be the perfect go-to cure when you’re feeling delicate. Simply pop them into the oven to warm through for 10 minutes, which if your hangovers were anything like mine, may be about the limit of your capabilities. Taste test proved the room temperature version was tastier than the fresh out of the oven one.
For four pastries
1 roll ready rolled puff pastry (I use Lidl´s, which is excellent)
1pt whole milk
120g vintage cheddar, grated
1 heaped tbsp unsalted butter
5 or 6 tbsp flour
1 heaped tsp Dijon mustard
Sea salt and black pepper
12 rashers pancetta / thin cut smoked streaky bacon
Remove the pastry in its packet from the fridge 1hr before you need it, it needs to come to room temperature.
Preheat your oven to 190°C.
Put the milk into a saucepan and bring to a simmer, then turn the heat off.
In another (large) saucepan place the butter and melt on a high heat, then add the flour— enough until you have a firmish ball a little like the consistency of mashed potato — then turn the heat down to low.
A ladle at a time add the milk to the roux you’ve made and whisk in, continuing to whisk for a couple of minutes after all the milk is in, to make sure the mix is smooth.
Add a generous scrunch of sea salt and black pepper, mustard and and stir until melted, then turn the heat off.
Cut the pastry sheet (the lidl one makes 4 squares exactly) into large squares.
Spoon the béchamel out onto the centre of the pastries until you’ve used it all up, then lay 2 slices of pancetta over each diagonally.Divide the grated cheese between the four turnovers
Bring the opposite corners up and brush a little of the beaten egg over one corner, folding the other corner over the top attaching it to it. Repeat with all of the pastries and then brush all the exposed pastry with the beaten egg.
Place into the oven for 20 minutes, and if you feel inclined 10 minutes in remove from the oven and grate a little Parmesan over the fold of each pastry.