Guava and Manchego Phyllo Pouches with Passion Fruit Syrup

Yield: Makes 6

Phyllo Pouches

  • • 1 cup 1/4- to 1/3-inch cubes guava paste* (about 7 ounces)
  • • 1 cup 1/4- to 1/3-inch cubes Manchego cheese (about 4 ounces)
  • • 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • • 9 tablespoons sugar
  • • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • • 3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • • 9 12×8-inch sheets fresh phyllo pastry or frozen, thawed
  • • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Preparation

Toss first 4 ingredients in medium bowl to combine. Cover filling and chill until ready to use, up to 1 day.

Stir sugar, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper in small bowl. Place 1 phyllo sheet on work surface; keep remaining sheets covered with plastic wrap and damp towel to prevent drying. Brush phyllo with butter and sprinkle with 11/2 teaspoons sugar mixture. Repeat 2 more times to make 3 layers. Cut rectangle in half crosswise, making two 6×8-inch stacks. Place scant 1/3 cup guava filling in center of each stack.

Gather sheets around filling to form pouch. Brush pouches with butter. Transfer to small baking sheet. Repeat with remaining ingredients to make 6 pouches total.

Sprinkle with some of remaining sugar mixture. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with plastic and refrigerate.)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake phyllo pouches uncovered until golden brown and filling is heated through, about 20 minutes. Transfer to plates. Spoon syrup alongside; serve phyllo pouches warm.

*A firm block of concentrated fruit available at some supermarkets, at Latin markets, and at cafecubano.com.

Passion Fruit Syrup

  • • 1 cup water
  • • 1 cup sugar
  • • 1/2 cup passion fruit pulp (from about 7 ripe passion fruits)

Preparation

Combine all ingredients in heavy small saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to low; simmer until syrup is reduced to 1 1/2 cups, about 15 minutes. Transfer to bowl, cover, and chill. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.)

BON APPÉTIT | MAY 2006 ALLEN SUSSER

note: This was made by our dessert queen Laurie and between the recipe and her arose perhaps the finest dessert I have ever tasted. – Paul

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