Savoury Sundried Tomato Pinwheels
Savoury Sundried Tomato Pinwheels
‘Come round for drinks and nibbles.’ Sounds simple doesn’t it? But it can get out of hand for the host, if you don’t have a plan that is. My strategy, as with most things, is to keep it simple with a combination of some ready-made options and my own delicious home made canapé including my savoury sundried tomato pinwheels.
Normally, I have about five or six options of canapé, plus a sweet one. To start, it’s ready to go simple things like crisps and nuts, nice ones though, something out of the ordinary. This counts for me as one canapé. I also buy another one or two ready-made options, and maybe even the sweet option, how many exactly depends on how much time I have. Things like cheese and cold meats – which I believe we have to call charcuterie these days – are always a staple then maybe a couple of fancier nibbles from the deli counter. Then I make one or two cold canapé and at least one warm, maybe more warm ones than cold if it’s wintertime.
One of my favourite types of warm canapé is my savoury sundried tomato pinwheels. They’re easy to make and you can do it in stages, using your fridge or freezer to help you with your timing. When they’re baking in the oven the make your whole house smell welcoming and delicious.
Savoury Sundried Tomato Pinwheels Recipe
Preparation Time: 20 to 25 minutes
Baking Time: 20 to 25 minutes
Makes: About 22 pinwheels
450gr / 16 oz. ready-made puff pastry
200gr / 7 oz. sundried or sun-blushed tomatoes – drain the oil and pat them dry to remove excess
2 x large cloves of garlic, crushed.
2 x tbsp of dried oregano
1 heaped tsp of dried chili flakes (optional)
100gr / 3.5 oz. grated parmesan cheese (or other mature hard cheese)
A little plain flour to help you roll out the pastry
Salt if your mix needs it
1 beaten egg to brush over the pinwheels before baking
- Set your oven to heat to 180°C/350°F and line a roasting tray (or two) with baking paper.
- Place the sundried tomatoes and garlic into a food processor and blitz until smooth. Taste and check if you need salt or want to add some more garlic or dried chili flakes. Depending on the tomatoes you buy, they may need a little sweetness to balance out the flavour. If this is the case, add a squeeze of honey or a teaspoon or two of sugar.
- Sprinkle a small handful of flour on a cool, dry, clean surface and roll out the pastry, turning it over occasionally until it measures about 46cm / 18in x 35cm / 14in. It should be quite thin, only a couple of millimeters.
- Place dollops of the sundried tomato mix at random intervals over the pastry and spread them together with the back of a metal spoon or spatula until evenly distributed, getting the mix as close to the edge as you can.
- Sprinkle the herbs over evenly, then the cheese.
- Then it’s time to roll. Be quick, firm and smooth with your actions. Roll from the longest side, make sure your pastry is even as you roll and not loose.
- Take a sharp knife and slice the pastry sausage into approximately 1cm / half inch pinwheels and lay each one on your baking tray(s) – not too close together – this is puff pastry after all so it will expand a little. Leave about 3 to 4cm / 1.5in between each wheel.
- Brush each pinwheel with the egg wash and place in the oven, for about 20 to 25 minutes. As ovens vary in how they cook, best to check after 15 minutes. The pinwheels are ready when they’re golden brown and crispy.
Savoury Sundried Tomato Pinwheels Tips and Variations
- Keep the oil from the tomatoes, you can use it as a starter oil for pasta sauces.
- The tomatoes need to be drained, if they’re too wet, your pastry won’t crisp up. Make sure you use tomatoes that are still juicy and not completely dried out as they are impossible to purée.
- You can prepare the pinwheels up to a day in advance, keep them in the fridge, covered, either in the sausage shape or sliced.
- The pinwheels can be served at room temperature, as well as fresh from the oven.
- If the pastry has become warm whilst you’ve been working with it, it may be difficult to cut into tidy slices. You can place the pastry ‘sausage’ in the fridge for about 30 minutes to chill which will make it easier to slice.
- Once cooked and cooled, you can keep the pinwheels in the freezer and pop straight into the oven when you want to eat them.
- Some of my other favourite fillings are pesto, or lots of parmesan and/or pecorino with loads of black pepper. Sometimes I grate a mixture of mature hard cheeses – a good way to use up bits and pieces of leftovers. I’ve even made pinwheels with leftover fondue cheeses. I had bits and pieces of Emmenthaler, Gruyere and Appenzeller lying around in the fridge, so I grated them, spread the cheese over the rolled-out pastry, sprinkled over black pepper and some freshly grated nutmeg. These went down really well.
- My pinwheels don’t need to be savoury. The simplest sweet version is a slathering of your favourite jam and a dusting of icing sugar when they come out the oven. You can also purée figs or dates or both to make a paste, and once you’ve spread this on the pastry, sprinkle over crushed pistachio nuts or almonds. I’d recommend a dusting of icing sugar to finish.
- Another of my party food favourites is my Fully Loaded Humus.