Product: GeeFree Gluten Free Puff Pastry Sheets – $8.49+
HOLD. THE. GLUTEN. FREE. PHONE.
Reread that product name…
YES!! Gluten Free Puff Pastry Sheets.
Bless you GeeFree. Bless you for bringing these into the gluten-free world. Thank you for putting these out on the market. Why? Because I’ve looked at the very complicated and confusing instructions on how to make gluten-free puff pastry at home and it was not something I thought I was capable of producing. Not well. Not at all. And I love to bake and cook. So…THANK YOU!!
It was at Expo West in 2014 that the GeeFree Gluten Free Puff Pastry Sheets were introduced. I saw the pictures on the various Twitter feeds and Instagrams that I follow of people who were fortunate enough to attend. And I was excited. SO excited. And then…let down at the fact that I have never…ever…seen this brand carried anywhere in my area. I looked though. And it took a trip to Columbus, Ohio…and the natural food store Raisin Rack, before I found these…three weekends ago. Believe it or not…it took over a year. I bet you’re wondering if the wait was worth it.
GeeFree Gluten Free began when Susan Hougui, a veteran of the food industry for over a decade, was visiting with friends while traveling overseas. The family needed to avoid gluten and Susan was served the most delicious puff pastries. Intrigued, as she had never seen anything like it, she tried them and found them to be crispy, yet tender, treats. Excited with this discovery, she called her friend and master baker, Steve Leyva, to help her recreate and perfect the treats that Hougui had been served…and that she knew would be a sensational hit. The first three products to be released in the savory line from GeeFree were Spanakopita, Franks in Blankets, and Chicken Pot Pie. And now…PUFF PASTRY!!
Puff Pastry…for sweet or savory. For desserts or dinner. PUFF PASTRY!! GLUTEN FREE PUFF PASTRY!!
Thank you…GeeFree Gluten Free. Thank you!
So…since I now had the GeeFree Gluten Free Puff Pastry Sheets in my clutches…and my freezer…I knew immediately the first thing I wanted to make with them. Way back…back before I went gluten-free, I made these amazing Tomato and Goat Cheese Tarts, with the aid of a recipe from The Barefoot Contessa, and fell in love with them. This was just before I had to go gluten-free…and so…when it happened, this new favorite recipe was now forever gone. I attempted it a couple of years ago, in 2013, with the Pillsbury Gluten Free Pie & Pastry Dough. It wasn’t the same at all. So…when a recipe that actually calls for puff pastry now can have real (gluten-free) puff pastry, I, naturally, have to make it. So I did.
I put the pastry sheets into the fridge the night before I was going to make this dish, allowing them to thaw from frozen. When I got home from work, I began to work on caramelizing onions for the recipe, slicing tomatoes, giving my homegrown basil a julienne, and then went to snag the pastry sheets from my fridge to prep them. My counter top got a liberal sprinkling of gluten-free flour, as did my rolling pin, and I rolled out the sheet to be thinner before cutting 6 inch circles from it. I used a paring knife to score a ¼-inch-wide border around each pastry circle. Then, the center circle was scored with the tines of a fork and given a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, not leaving the border of that second circle. The caramelized onions were placed on top, along with crumbled goat cheese, a slice of tomato, olive oil, basil, salt and pepper. I sliced shards of Parmesan to put over the top and went to bake these tarts, praying that this all worked out just as I remembered.
The bad…the puff pastry didn’t puff up around the edge that was not scored. So, if you are looking for that flaky, layered, soft crust that puff pastry produces when it puffs in the oven…this didn’t happen. The puff pastry remained completely flat…like a pizza crust.
The good…it tasted phenomenal. And even though I baked it at a higher temperature (per the recipe I was using, as opposed to the box directions), it didn’t burn (like the Pillsbury pastry dough did), and it did have that light texture you expect from a puff pastry…just without the lift. And that’s fine. It got to this gorgeous golden color. And it worked as a great base for the tart I was making. So, it wasn’t like the one I used to be able to eat…it sure tasted like it. Looks aren’t everything. And this didn’t look bad, it just didn’t get puffy. The flavor, buttery, crispy, soft, amazing…yeah…it was worth the wait for over a year to actually try this stuff. And I think next time I’m going to try it in one of their suggestions online…like a fruit tart…or a vegan version of a pot pie. Hmmm…that might be what I do actually. YUM!!
Let’s discuss what goes into the making of the GeeFree Gluten Free Puff Pastry Sheets. These pastry sheets are made from potato starch, butter (sweet cream, natural flavorings), water, canola oil, eggs, sugar, baking powder, salt, xanthan gum, flaxseed meal, whey protein concentrate, inulin (chickory root), guar gum, baking soda, citric acid, and annatto.
Each package contains two 9×7 frozen puff pastry sheets. This box is meant to serve 6 people. A serving size is 1.5 ounces of a pastry sheet. This serving will provide you with 150 calories, 9 grams fat, 4.5 grams saturated fat, 0 grams trans fat, 25 grams cholesterol, 250 mg sodium, 18 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 1 gram sugars, and 0 grams of protein. Not extremely filling…but definitely full of delicious flavor and texture.
I am impressed with the innovation of gluten free puff pastry sheets that can be bought at the store in the freezer section instead of having to go through the quite labor-intensive way of making it from scratch. GeeFree Gluten Free took all the hard work out of the task and simplified it into puff pastry sheets that are there for your convenience. I am one happy little baker and chef right now. Oh yes…so very happy. If you can find the GeeFree products, get the Gluten Free Puff Pastry and create some puff pastry goodness. Just…amazing that it has happened.