Gail Simmons is a culinary expert, food critic, television personality and longtime Puff Pastry fan. She is currently the Special Projects Director at Food & Wine magazine. Now she is joining us, sharing her recipes, expertise and enthusiasm for all things Puff Pastry.
“The key to a great dish is simplicity.”
Gail’s Top Party-Giving Tips
While everyone loves my classic Puff Pastry PB&J Doughnuts, party-goers are often excited by an assortment of fun flavor combinations, so I mix it up! Try peanut butter and chocolate chip, or raspberry and white chocolate, two other options that work perfectly with these versatile Puff Pastry doughnuts. Serve all three to ensure you’ve got all your guests’ tastes covered.
“Fancy” does not have to equal “difficult”
To add sophistication to any gathering, try serving my Smoked Salmon Blini Puffs with an elegant glass of crisp, bubbly sparkling wine. Guests are immediately impressed by this chic pairing—and its preparation is practically effortless.
Keep calm in the kitchen
If you suddenly realize you’re short on an ingredient, don’t panic! Many ingredients can often be replaced by others. Fresh spinach can easily be substituted for frozen spinach—and your guests will never know the difference.
You won’t enjoy your party if you spend a ton of time in the kitchen, so try to think of simple ways to speed up the prep process. For example, when preparing pears for my Tarte Tatin, I recommend using a melon baller to quickly scoop the core and seeds from the pear halves.
Hosting a festive gathering is your chance to showcase your culinary talents, so don’t be afraid to introduce party-goers to your newest recipes, however out-of-the-box they might seem. Make sure to do a “test run” a few days before the event to work out any unexpected issues with cooking time and/or ingredients.
When prepping my PB&J Doughnuts (or any other delicious flavor variation), line the baking sheet with parchment paper first to ease the clean-up process. Less time cleaning means more time socializing with guests.
New Video! Gail on "GMA"
Watch Gail on "Good Morning America" making an easy and amazing Farmer's Breakfast Tart.Watch Now >