This cream cheese pastry dough recipe is from the venerable baker and cookbook author Maida Heatter. I've adapted the instructions for using it to make homemade toaster pastries. You can go either sweet or savory: fill them with fruit preserves, applesauce or chocolate to ham & cheese, sauteed veggies or tomato sauce and mozarella. Or create your own fillings for snacks that everyone will just die to get their hands on!
In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and cream cheese until very well blended. Whisk the salt into the flour and gradually add it to the bowl on low speed. Stop the mixer, scrape the dough down the beater with a rubber spatula and mix until the dough is smooth.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter top. Divide the dough in half, shape each half into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill for 2 hours or overnight (or freeze for up to 1 month).
When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375° F.
Roll out one piece of the dough to 1/8-inch thick. Using a ruler or other straight edge,. trim off the ends to make a large rectangle. Choose the size of toaster pastry you'd like. (I make sweet ones roughly 3 inches by 4 inches; the savory ones I like slightly larger, 4 by 5 inches.) The size does not matter and measuring is not necessary so long as the tops and the bottoms more or less match up.
Lay the rectangles on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper with about 2 inches between them.
Whisk the egg in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of water. Brush the rectangles with the egg wash. Arrange just enough of the filling down the center of each rectangle leaving a half-inch border on all sides.
Repeat the rolling, trimming and cutting process with the second piece of dough. Match up tops to bottoms and seal the edges by pressing around all sides with the tines of a fork. Brush the finished pastries with the egg wash.
Collect any used dough. Re-chill the dough and re-roll, cut, fill and bake until you have made as many pastries as you can fit on a second baking sheet.
Bake the pastries one baking sheet at a time until golden brown, 20-25 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack to serve warm or at room temperature.
If you only have salted butter, simply half the amount of salt in the recipe to 1/4 teaspoon.
For sweet toaster pastries, sprinkle the tops with turbinado sugar or cinnamon-sugar after brushing with the egg wash and before baking.
Copyright 2021 Lynne Curry