I am addicted to dessert. Sweets are my thing. I would take a piece of cake over a cocktail any day. When I met my husband, he told me that he wasn’t a big dessert guy. What kind of life is that?! Turns out, he had simply never eaten good dessert. 12 years and endless confections later and he is a self-proclaimed “sweets person”. I’ve converted him. You’re welcome, Bill.
While I would love to make elaborate, over-the-top recipes (like the ones you see in Bon Appétit Magazine), I almost never have the time or motivation to execute them. When looking for a go-to, easy dessert recipe, the key elements for me are 1) delicious 2) easy and 3) quick.
One dessert that I have made for years is Nutella Hand Pies. It fits all three categories, plus they look fancy so people will think that you worked harder than you really did.
I came up with this recipe one day when we invited friends over for dinner and I didn’t have a lot of time. I knew I didn’t want to just phone it in with a box brownie mix (even though I considered it). So, I had to come up with something easy and fast (that still looked like I had put effort into it). My mind immediately went to 2 of my favorite things- Nutella and Puff Pastry.
This recipe is super basic but it looks fancy. Let’s do it!
1 package puff pastry sheets (I use this brand, but any will do)
1 1/2 cups Nutella
1 one egg, beaten
1/8 cup raw sugar (can sub regular sugar if that’s all you have on hand)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Lay 1 sheet of puff pastry on a lightly floured surface. Cut the sheet into 9-12 roughly equal rectangles. They don’t need to be perfect, mine never are (see below). Set those rectangles aside and do the same thing with the second sheet of pastry.
With a spoon, scoop out a dollop of Nutella into the centers of one sheet’s worth of squares.
Brush the edges of the squares with egg wash. Take the set of squares that you set aside earlier and brush the edges with the egg wash. Gently place one on top of each of the Nutella squares, egg wash side down.
Press the edges together gently with your fingers, encasing the entire dollop of Nutella and crimp edges with a fork. Brush the tops of the hand pies with egg and sprinkle with raw sugar.
Bake on a cookie sheet for 20 min. Make sure to keep an eye on them so they don’t burn.
That’s it! The hand pies puff up and turn golden and flakey. It’s almost like a grown-up Toaster Strudel. (Remember those? I was obsessed when I was a kid.) They are very easy to make and perfect for when you don’t have a lot of time.
In the past I have experimented with adding other ingredients into the filling, such as cream cheese or tart cherry preserves. They have all turned out delicious, so feel free to try out whatever combo you like.
Do you have any go-to dessert recipes? I’d love to hear about them in the comments.