When it comes to food for picnics (or just a bit of snacking), I like to make recipes that don't require too much effort, but still deliver when it comes to flavor. These palmiers packed with cheddar and cilantro-mint chutney definitely fall in that category: They’re simple and super-delicious.
These are so easy to prepare that even my kids like to make them sometimes—fresh, zingy chutney and creamy cheese wrapped up in store-bought puff pastry, resulting in crispy-flaky little bites. The key is the fresh chutney, which takes just a few minutes to prepare; you can turn the heat up or down with your choice of chile here. And if you don't have the fresh herbs to make the chutney, you could use a jarred chutney, or even that jar of prepared pesto lurking in the back of your fridge. These palmiers are great warm, but fantastic at room temperature, too.
Hear more from Resident Chetna Makhan on our new podcast, Either Side Eaters, where cross-Atlantic friends Katie Quinn and Jen Phanomrat compare notes with their guests on everything from scone etiquette to charcuterie trends. —Chetna Makan
- Prep time 1 hour
- Cook time 30 minutes
- makes 12 to 14
- Cilantro-Mint Chutney
1 1/2 cups
firmly packed (50 grams) fresh cilantro leaves
firmly packed (25 grams) fresh mint leaves
bird’s-eye green, Thai, or Scotch bonnet chiles
lemon juice (from 1 large lemon)
All-purpose flour, for dusting
sheet packaged puff pastry (between 8 and 12 ounces), thawed but still cold
(100 grams) coarsely grated extra-sharp white cheddar cheese
large egg, lightly beaten
- Combine all of the chutney ingredients in a blender with 1 tablespoon of water and blitz until smooth. Alternatively, make the purée with a mortar and pestle. Add water as needed until spreadable, but not totally smooth. Set aside (you should have about 1/2 cup).
- Heat the oven to 400°F/200°C (or 350°F/180°C in a convection oven). Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Lightly flour a work surface and unroll the pastry into a 13x10-inch rectangle (the longer sides should be facing north and south, and the shorter sides east and west). Spread the chutney over the surface of the pastry, leaving a thin edge around, then sprinkle the cheese over the chutney. Press the cheese into the pastry with your hands.
- Working from the long end of the pastry closest to you (the south-facing side), fold about 1/2 inch of the pastry over itself, then very tightly roll the pastry until you’ve reached the center (or rolled about half the pastry). Repeat this process on the north side of the pastry, until the two rolls meet in the middle.
- Brush the very center of the pastry (the gap between the two rolls) with some of the beaten egg, then gently press the two rolls together to seal the middle. Flip over the pastry log.
- Brush away the excess flour from the pastry. Use a sharp knife to cut the log into 1-inch-thick slices (you should have about 12 to 14 pieces).
- Brush the top of each sliced pastry with more beaten egg, then place them flat, about 1 inch apart, on the prepared sheet pan. If the pastry seems quite warm and soft to the touch, you can pop it in the freezer for 5 minutes to firm up. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until golden and crispy. Enjoy them warm or at room temperature.