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I am going to be attempting a recipe for tarts which use shop-bought puff pastry. I am fairly new to baking and this will be the first time I am using puff pastry. I am unsure what I can do with the remainder of the puff pastry once I have cut the circles that I need.

Can I just squash the piece together and stick it in the fridge for another time? Should I just bake them along with the tarts to use them up? Will they need to be thrown away?

My concern is the butter in the pastry and the fact that it will have warmed up by my rolling and handling and what impact that will have on subsequent use.

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Welcome to Seasoned Advice! The way your question was titled it sounded like you are asking what recipes are available for puff pastry. We generally close this type of question, unless they fulfill some very specific criteria (and yours wouldn't, because puff pastry is a common ingredient). I hope that the new wording still helps you, as it is consistent with the body of the question. –  rumtscho Aug 12 '13 at 10:32
    
@rumtscho Thanks for the edit. I knew that recipe questions were off topic but hadn't noticed that my title was a little ambiguous. It's much better now. –  Burhan Ali Aug 13 '13 at 6:49

2 Answers 2

up vote 5 down vote accepted

No, you probably don't want to just squish leftover puff pastry dough together to save it. While it would be perfectly safe, it would ruin the layering that gives the rise and flakiness that is the reason for using puff pastry.

If you have a large enough section still intact, you could put in the refrigerator for a day or two, to use later.

Otherwise, a typical thing to do would be to prepare sweet or savory snacks with the surplus pieces. Cut it into convenient shapes. If you have large enough pieces, sticks would be good, even twisting them to give them an interesting texture.

Then, brush the pieces with butter (or oil), and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar; or grated Parmesan cheese; or rosemary and salt; or some other complimentary flavor.

Bake the pieces up until they are puffed and golden brown and they are very nice snacks or treats.

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Great suggestion. I ended up making a load of randomly shaped sweet and savoury bits. I'm glad it didn't go to waste and I also learned how to make another thing. –  Burhan Ali Aug 14 '13 at 22:50
    
Glad it was a good outcome for you... –  SAJ14SAJ Aug 14 '13 at 22:56

If you want to try to merge bits of layered dough to make large enough to use for something other than small bits, you should try to maintain the directions of the layers.

It won't be quite the same quality, but you can place bits edges together in two layers (top layer to cover any gaps in the bottom layer, then roll it out.

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