This has been an epic week.
I met the man-friend’s mother. I never talk about the relationship I have with A, but needless to say it’s a rather sensitive one. One that requires undivided attention, lots of espresso shots and some serious affection for me. That kicked off what is now the most important week in the last 6.5 years I’ve been in Atlanta.
That untimely tryst, though one that had raised all kinds of questions in everyone’s head in my inner circle, turned out to be a special situation. The afternoon was lovely. Quaint, comfortable, generous and very warm.
And then there was a delicious dinner for two I hosted, ironically just 10 minutes from A’s mom’s house. What are the odds? In her neighborhood twice in 3 days. Hmmm.
And now the move. The “2 years in prayer” move has finally arrived and almost done. As I write this post, I’m stuffing my face with the following: mint chocolate chip ice cream with pound cake, espresso (a quad shot), sea salt chocolate, jalapeño cheddar chips and a few swigs of rum. Not at all an ideal combination, but definitely an appropriate one for the occasion. See, I don’t have a bed to sleep on tonight, so I’m pulling an all-nighter and wrapping this THING up.
In all the fury, as aforementioned in yesterday’s quickie post, I’ve had to find time to cook and even blog. A normal, rational person under these same circumstances wouldn’t dare log on to WordPress to even accept comments, and here I am, having cooked and written up a few recipes with these long a$$ stories I love to tell.
I’ve gone mad.
The real objective of this post which I see now has become an emotional can of worms waiting to be pried open, is to highlight this delicate and somewhat refined, yet ridiculous sugar bomb of a dessert. The creative heads behind 5 Star Foodie Makeover — you know, the monthly gourmet cooking club I’m cheerfully a member of — decided to throw us a curve ball this month. Restaurant Wars!
How do you like them dishes!? We were all split up into teams and given an ingredient or two which we had to use to come up with a “restaurant” name. Ours? The PINK GOAT. Pretty genius if you ask me. Right up my chic alley.
La Cabra Rosada says it all. Rhubarb, a tangy vegetable, indigenous to the Asian content and modernly used as a “fruit” in cakes, pies, tarts, etc… and goat cheese, a soft white queso. How insanely perfect is that courtship? However, I had a slight conundrum. I remember not liking rhubarb in the slightest the first time I had it. Since I was tasked with making dessert, I had not a clue on how I was going to make this work into something memorable. Truth be told, I’ve been sitting on my idea for about 3 weeks now. With the elevated drama in my life, I let it take a back seat and allowed the stress to compound, until this morning.
If you know me personally, you probably know I work extremely well under pressure. It’s always been that way in my life. And so what would this task be any different?
On 3 hours of sleep and a full day (at time of publishing, it will be exactly 22 hours) of hard labor ahead of me, the very dessert I was going to make designed itself in front of my eyes and vibrantly emitted aromas in my nasal passage. I stopped the mad packer I was and started the process. I knew from the onset of the assignment that I wanted to do something along the lines of a puff pastry.
What resulted was a mediocrity of a plan but a superb dessert for young, tired, energetic and daring to enjoy — all of which I happen to embody right now. I started with making a thick sauce with fresh rhubarb chunks and cocktail of sugars. As I stirred and pondered an extra ingredient, I went for a slightly bruised banana at my reach. I chopped it up and added it to the mix… and then a bit of goat cheese and ginger. I smelled everything I wanted to. I cooked it until thick enough to be the sexy ooz that would seep out of each cut.
A puff pastry takes a standard egg wash, no? I wanted more rhubarb! ¡Mas! I took a bit of my unadulterated rhubarb batch, thinned it and add it to the wash. My thought process became more complicated and more delicious. After 90 minutes of playing, tasting, adding, taking away, modifying and finalizing, I pulled this lovely, fragrant and somewhat of rustic-looking pastry out of oven.
Initially I didn’t drizzle the sauce on the puff. I simply sprinkled cheese on top and around the perimeter of the plate and garnished it with lavender. But that was a bit plain and was missing something. I took most of the reserve sauce and went to town in dressing up my pretty little thing. And with more queso.
It was the last thing I cooked in my oven. The oven that has been the vessel for many a fantastic menus, casual and fine here in Atlanta.
I’m so thrilled I put on my Super Woman costume and made this work. Truthfully, I was so nervous I was going to have to back out, but hey, in my world, things really do happen under extreme cases of pressure. With Cuba Libre’s in my hand… lots of them.
I’d make this again, and again and again. Perhaps with a bit more time la proxima!
Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.
Follow the sexy & delicious fun on
Rhubarb & Goat Cheese & Banana Stuffed Puff Pastry
- 1/2 lb. rhubarb, sliced 1″ chunks
- 1/2 cup goat cheese, divided
- 2 Tbsp. white sugar
- 4 Tbsp. brown sugar, divided
- 1/2 banana
- 2 tsp. fresh ginger, grated
- 1 tsp. lavandar
- 1 egg (for wash)
- 1 puff pastry sheet (frozen or homemade)
In medium saucepan, combine rhubarb, white sugar, ginger, banana and half of brown sugar. Stir on medium heat in rhubarb is cooked down but not falling apart. Add a pinch of water if you see your mixture thicken too much. After 20-25 minutes, add half amount of cheese. Stir on low heat for 5 minutes or until cheese is fully melted. Set mixture aside.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Bake pastry puff per box instructions if purchased, approximately 20 minutes. In the meantime, make your egg wash and add 1 tsp. of rhubarb mixture. Remove puff pastry from oven. Let sit for 5 minutes. Using pastry brush, glaze each puff pastry with egg wash. Fill each pastry with 2-3 Tbsp. of rhubarb mix. Top with goat cheese and remaining brown sugar. Bake for 10 minutes or until sugar has browned. Remove from oven. Top with a bit more goat cheese. Drizzle pastry puff with extra rhubarb sauce. Garnish with lavender.
93 thoughts on “Rhubarb, Goat Cheese & Banana Stuffed Puff Pastry”
That looks incredibly scrumptious! A wonderful combination.
Looks fabulous! I like that you added rhubarb in the egg wash. Thanks for pulling it off in the midst of all the stress! Looking forwrad to seeing you in DC soon!
That dessert is gorgeous! I laughed at your thought process – it mirrors mine, i.e. no aforethought!
You pulled it off just in the knick of time and did a great job!
Good luck in your new digs.
Crazy Gorgeous B!
Awesome pastry and a fitting finale for the Atlanta oven.
Good luck on the move and be well!
Looks great as usual. A shame I can’t have those now that I’m hitting the gym more regularly. Then again, you are allowed cheat days! 🙂
I think it’s neat that this is the last thing you cooked in your oven. Good luck with your move Bren.
Your choice of a blue plate and lavender garnish makes for a terrific photo too!
Great addition to the menu!
Rosa: Thanks, lovely. I think you’d really like it.
5 Star Foodie: Thanks for a great concept this month. So much fun. Loved making it all things considered. See you soon!
Joan Nova: Thanks you creative woman. Great minds think alike.
Gabi: Awww, so sweet of you Gabi. I’ll be sure to fill everyone in during the transition. So much going on. Very exciting.
Rohan: Always allow for cheat days. Life is no fun otherwise.
Lori Lynn: I’m tickled you noticed the plating. It was all confidence. It was the lone plate I didn’t pack in order to photograph the pastry. And, the lavender was about to make it to the trash but my philosophy on not trashing anything make the dish really stand out!
So glad you were able to make this with all the life commotion. The one thing I’m left with (aside from drooling over your dessert) is what happens to A now that you’re moving to D.C.
Hola! I’m not a goat cheese fan but that looks so yummy. I can just feel the pounds coming in. 🙂 Great stuff like always!!!
Bren, this dessert looks and sounds absolutely delicious, as usual all your recipes. Very curious of the combo: banana, goat cheese, rhubarb & lavender… must try it out one day.
Congratulations and good luck with your move!
Your delectable dessert addition is a thing of rustic beauty! What a delightful use of the ingredients!
Bren. This was great! I lived tasting it right out of the oven. I don’t know what A is going to do with you in DC!! All that feeding you were doing. I like how all this came together for you.yiu definitely work well under pressure.
Angela: Exactly! I’m not sure of his thought process but I’m sure he’ll figure out. I say we’re only a flight away. He’s probably more concerned with missing my cooking.
Simone. You’d love it, too.
Margot: It all worked, surprisingly. I might make it again and tweak it some. I had no time, but I really enjoyed the banana in there.
Magic: Rustic beauty! Yes! Glad you liked.
Michele: I know, right. I can appreciate when friends dig into my food and then talk about it!
This was really good and I also love goat cheese. If you ever come out with a “best of” desert list this one will be number #2 after your Salted Caramel Flan (YUM).
Great combo of salty and sweet. Inspired.
This is going to be hard, but I have to say it: Esta es mi receta favorita en tu blog!!! Se ve fabuloso!!
lucky guy Bren! you are not only beautiful but so talented! this looks super delicious!
Congrats again on your move, Bren! You seem so happy. Hoping for many more Cuba Libres and a brand new over in DC 🙂
que rico me dan ganas de comerme eso o por lo menos tenerlo aqui ahora mismo
Bren this sounds and looks AMAZING! I totally love the combination of flavors, it’s completely unexpected but I can see how it would work together.
Dullah: I’m glad you liked it! Thanks for the super kind compliments. 🙂 that makes me happy.
Coco Cooks: Thanks!
Comiendo en LA: oh wow! Those are big words, amiga! I hope you take a stab at it.
Eliana: Wow, thanks so much. That’s entirely too sweet.
Sujeiry: Thanks, thanks, thanks. You know exactly how I’m feeling, right!
Betty: Te lo voy hacer!!! Te va encantar.
Jehancncook: It was, I won’t lie. It took some time to get it right, but it was so worth it. Total sugar overload.
It is a work of art, my friend.
You really do work well under pressure Bren!!! Good luck in your move and the next chapter of your life.
Im going to take you up on making it for me! In MY house so the aroma can linger for hours on end. I love bananas and goat cheese.. can’t say I’ve had the pleasure of rhubarb.
Wow Bren, congratulations and good luck on your move 🙂
This dessert looks awesome, great flavors and love the pictures as always…
Again congratulations, I am very happy for you dear!
A sweet treat to celebrate the end and beginning of many things. You have to take the good (and sweet) with the…interesting. Let’s call it that, instead of bad. 🙂 Delicious.
That picture makes me feel like I am right there about to take a big bite of this wonderful dish! Just printed the recipe and about to run out at lunch to get the ingredients to make this dish. Can’t wait!
Thanks Bren 😉
i’ve been looking for something to play around with rhubarb, this misght just be it!!! Thanks for the inspiration…
Damn Bren, that looks ridiculous! Such a random combination of ingredients….
Unknown Mami: Gracias for darte cuenta.
Bellini: I sure do, girl! Oh my gosh, my whole life! It’s insane.
Jonathan: Yes, I’ll gladly make it for you and wifey. Both will love and beg me for more! I think you’ll like rhubarb once you try it in this.
Juliana: Thanks sweet friend. It was stressful to say the least but it all worked out. You’re a sweet, sweet girl.
Duo Dishes: You got that right!! Love the way you think.
Dawn: Ha. That’s the feeling I try to offer you all.
KarmaFreeCooking: Make it, chica. Te va gustar.
Nick: Hmmm. Not sure how to take that! LOL!
You have outdone yourself! This is one of the most tempting recipes I’ve read in a long time. Thanks for posting (and since my hubby’s a big rhubarb and banana fan, it looks like the pressure is on to make this!).
You had me at rhubarb.
Can I conceive your children?
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