Friday, October 9, 2009

Turning Over a New Blueberry Recipe

I have a two-sided relationship with Cooking Light. I own many Cooking Light cookbooks and they are my go-to books for salads, main meals, and for when I'm feeling fat. But their dessert sections tend to have weird, fake ingredients like egg substitute, margarine, and non-fat cream cheese. Euwww.

My personal philosophy is that desserts are meant to be enjoyed. Weird, I know, but true. Put in real butter, don't skimp on the quality chocolate, and enjoy that whipped cream on top. That being said, I don't serve very large portions of dessert. If you use great ingredients, you can savor each bite and feel satisfied with a small amount.

When thumbing through my pile of torn-out-of-magazine recipes to find something to do with the abundance of blueberries, my eye was caught by a beautiful picture of an oozing, blueberry turnover. It happened to be from Cooking Light, so I was a bit dubious, but a quick scan of the ingredients showed the only off ingredient was lower fat cream cheese. I could handle that and just substitute real cream cheese.

My turnovers turned out just like the picture. What neither the picture nor the recipe revealed, though, was that in an effort to get the fat statistic below the magical 30%, they apportioned a tiny amount of dough per turnover and it had to be wafer thin. It was sticky, ripped easily, and was a pain in the patoot to work with. Plus, when it came out of the oven, the texture was tough and cardboardy.

It did improve when stored overnight in an airtight container. The dough softened up and the texture improved.

Final verdict? For all the effort, it only yielded 4 turnovers. I'd double the recipe if I made it again. I loved the taste of the filling, but I'd skip this dough and use your favorite pastry dough recipe. Something with a better taste and texture. And if it's got a little more fat? Well, life's short. Splurge once in a while.

Blueberry Turnovers
- adapted from Cooking Light magazine


1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp 1/3-less-fat cream cheese (or regular, if you don't care about counting fats)
1 Tbsp butter
Dash of salt
1 Tbsp ice water

2/3 cup blueberries
1-1/2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp grated lemon rind
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
Cooking spray
1 tsp sugar, divided

1- To prepare the crust, place the flour, 2 Tbsp sugar, cream cheese, butter and salt in a food processor; pulse 5 times or until mixture resembles coarse meal. With processor running, add ice water, processing just until combined, but not forming a ball. Empty the mixture onto a sheet of heavy plastic wrap and gently form it into a 3-inch circle. Wrap it tightly and chill for 15 minutes.

2- Preheat oven to 400 deg. F. with a rack in the center of the oven. Prepare a baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper.

3- Divide dough into 4 equal portions; place each portion between 2 sheets of plastic wrap. Roll each portion into a 5-inch circle. Place dough in freezer for 5 minutes or until the plastic wrap can be easily removed.

4- To prepare filling, combine blueberries and next 4 ingredients in a bowl. Working with 1 dough portion at a time, remove plastic wrap from dough. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and brush with egg white. Spoon about 2 Tbsp blueberry filling onto half of circle. Fold dough over filling and press the edges together with a fork to seal. Place the turnover on prepared baking sheet. Lightly spray turnover with cooking spray (or lightly brush with melted butter) and sprinkle with 1/4 tsp sugar. Pierce the turnover with a fork. Repeat procedure to form 3 more turnovers.

5- Bake at 400 deg. F for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack. Yield: 4 turnovers.


LizNoVeggieGirl said...

I'm the same way with Cooking Light - I love the magazine, but sometimes the substitutions are just NOT worth it. Here's to richness and indulgence!! :)

Jennifer Jo said...

I fully agree with you about the ironies of healthy desserts. I have a full-fat cheesecake chilling in the fridge, no apologies.

Heather said...

i fully agree with your personal philosophy on desserts! these look so good :)

Alexis said...

If you're doing hand pies, this recipe is the way to go--

And it's important to use lard in the crust because lard is delicious, and really the best thing for baking (or in this case, frying)

Maria said...

I love the individual pies. A great treat!

NKP said...

I'm with you - the fake food subs will kill you a lot faster than the natural fats!
I love the little hand pies, so tasty and cute!

Melinda said...

I totally agree with you.
I hereby nominate Lynn Craig for President of Desserts... and other stuff.

CaSaundraLeigh said...

I love getting the Cooking Light mag too, but yes, I totally agree with you. I would rather have a small portion of the real thing vs a lot of something that I truly don't enjoy!
These look wonderful!

grace said...

they look kinda like chocolate chip cookies. really flat chocolate chip cookies. those'd be good, but so would these. it's definitely a unique dough--i'm glad you tried it out for me. :)

Cookie baker Lynn said...

VeggieGirl - Indulgences R Us!

Mama JJ - Cheesecake? Yes, you're welcome to the club.

Heather - Another member? Excellent!

DothNotWisdom - Mmmm, those sound really good. My husband would be ecstatic if I made those for him.

Maria - I agree.

Natashya - hurray for butter!

Melinda - I totally don't deserve this noble nomination for my piece of dessert, but I accept.

CaSaundraLeigh - Your membership card is on the way.

Grace - You see chocolate chip cookies? Was this a Rorshach test? I think it's a fine thing to have chocolate chip cookies on the brain.

Barbara said...

Well, every recipe can't be perfect- and you sure gave the ole school try with this one.
I made a blueberry turnover recipe Giada DeLaurentis made- hideously fattening (pie crust, fried), delicious, but so delicate they fell apart. No point in making those again. Anyway, I hated to think of the calories in those.

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

Definitely double the recipe Lynn and I agree that desserts are meant to be enjoyed...all or nothing:D

Elle said...

turnovers are such fun---a personal pie. Next time you might want to use this cream cheese based pie crust from Peabody: because it would probably be just right. The cream cheese flavor is so nice with fruit, especially blueberries. I used it with peach handpies and was very happy with the results.

Peabody said...

Well, you know how I feel about substitutions. ;)

Did you buy a blueberry farm. You have made too much with blueberry lately...I can't eat them. :(

Dolce said...

I would rather eat veggies & low fat & low carb stuff for an entree and save calories for dessert... so I hear you :)

Debbie said...

I totally agree with you - desserts are meant to be enjoyed. I think I would rather skimp somewhere else but NOT on dessert!!!

Michelle said...

This looks really good! I love blueberries!

eatme_delicious said...

I agree - I always go full fat with desserts. =) These turnovers look awesome. Kind of like thin chocolate chip cookies but with blueberries. Too bad they had weird ideas about what to do with the dough.

Miss High Heels said...

Delicious! I too agree with you completely on the full fat dessert debate. Diet desserts will never be top of my list!

Jamie said...

Oh, so agree with you! What is the point of a gorgeous dessert if it isn't pure magic! Worried? Just eat less of it! The blueberries look yummy though but I can see they need a heftier wrapping.