This post is the fifth in a series on meals prepared from ingredients purchased from the farmers market (previous post: Farmers Market Meal #4 – Strawberry Shortcake). I’m fairly new to the farmers market scene. I’ve always had good intentions about purchasing local foods but never followed through because I felt lost walking through the stands wondering what to buy. I decided to combat this by coming up with a plan. Before going to the market, I research recipe ideas using seasonal ingredients with the objective of creating one easy meal with as many local ingredients as possible. This way, when I get to the market, I have focus. It definitely helps that my favorite market provides a sign up for weekly email updates about participating vendors and seasonal items.
I like to watch cooking shows. Recently, I saw a show on Mexican food, which introduced me to a puff pastry stuffed with quince paste and cheese. Prior to seeing this show, I never heard of quince paste. Apparently, it is a thick, sweet jelly made from the pulp of quince, which is a pome fruit similar in appearance to a pear.
Since seeing this show, I’ve had the idea that I could make a version of this with a filling made from local ingredients. Here in central Pennsylvania, we don’t have quince paste, but we have lots of apple butter. Since I knew I would miss my favorite farmers market this week because of a prior engagement, I thought this would be a good time to give this a try.
As my guide, I used the recipe Quince and Cream Cheese Pastry from Lola’s Cocina, but I substituted apple butter for the quince paste. I purchased the apple butter from Tait Farm in Centre Hall, PA and the cream cheese from the Penn State Berkey Creamery, which makes their cream cheese (along with their cheddar cheeses, dips, and spreads) using milk from their on-campus herd.
This made a great breakfast with coffee and was super easy – a layer of cream cheese topped with apple butter between puff pastry and baked. (I didn’t even bother with the simple syrup used in the recipe and just scored the top of the pastry instead of cutting it all the way through.)