I tried many new foods in 2018, including this Gluten Free Almond Banket. Prior to this recipe, I never tried it, but now this may be one of my new favorite recipes! If you love almond, this is for you!
If I needed to sum up the end of 2018 in one word it would be “unexpected.” It felt like a whirlwind, in quickly and over in a snap. Many of my unexpected moments included negative things. Someone smashed the windows on both of our cars. My husband became ill over break, and my father landed himself in the emergency room with Afib.
Not the way I would have planned it. However, I experienced some unexpected positive things as well. You all loved, and shared, my gluten free Monkey Bread recipe. My grandmother generously gifted us with enough money for our repairs. In addition, I tried this gluten free almond banket for the first time, and LOVED it.
Schar Gluten Free Puff Pastry
The new Schar gluten free puff pastry dough made this last one possible. Here’s the down low on the dough! One box of Schar gluten free puff pastry dough contains two sheets of pastry. One sheet weighs just over 8 oz. and measures approximately 9.5 inches square.
Schar gluten free Puff Pastry comes frozen, and can be thawed three hours at room temperature or 5 mins in the microwave at reduced power. I highly recommend thawing it at room temperature. Silly me thawed the second roll in the fridge over night, and it was not as easy to work with. It comes rolled in its own parchment paper, which makes baking easy!
Many people ask me where to find the Schar puff pastry. As of this printing, it is not available online, nor is it available nationwide at Whole Foods. As with all new products, I highly recommend going to your local independent store and requesting it in person. Give them the Schar Product Request Form, which has the UPC codes to aid in ordering. Here in Michigan, I am told it is available at Foods For Living in East Lansing.
Origins of Gluten Free Almond Banket
In September I asked on Facebook what Christmas recipes you wanted me to recreate. As you can tell by the date of this publication, I fell a little behind on sharing this before Christmas. However, I kept my word that I would try this recipe for gluten free almond banket! So glad I did, because this dessert is amazing. Basically, it’s a mixture of almond paste, egg and sugar baked inside a flaky pastry. Therefore, I figured the Schar gluten free puff pastry was perfect for this treat.
Gluten Free Almond Banket comes from the Dutch heritage. Grand Rapids and the west side of Michigan is home to many Dutch people. (After all, we have a city named Holland that has a well known Tulip Festival.) Therefore, I sought out wisdom from those in the Greater Grand Rapids Gluten Free Facebook page. They were incredible helpful, as was my pastry chef friend Annie. While she’s not a dedicated gluten free baker, her artistry is amazing! (I first met her when I visited Hall Street Bakery. ) I found watching this YouTube video helpful as well.
Prepping Your Gluten Free Almond Banket for Baking
Gluten Free Almond Banket compares to cinnamon rolls, in that you rolling filling in dough. However, the similarities stop there. First, you don’t spread the filling out flat. Instead, your form it into a log, then roll that log in pastry. Second, it differs by closing up the ends securely. Otherwise, the filling will completely bake out. Trust me, you don’t want this to happen. You then tuck the ends underneath and secure them firmly. Thirdly, you don’t cut it into rolls. It remains one large log.
An important step in making this dessert is to close the ends of the dough firmly, as pictured above. The Schar gluten free puff pastry was very malleable at room temperature. I was able to pinch the ends and fold them under the roll fairly easily. The biggest trick is getting the main seam to seal well. When I made it a second time, I found that rolling the whole log against my pastry mat, with a touch of flour, helped it to stay firm.
To help keep your fully formed gluten free almond banket sealed, you will brush the dough generously with beaten egg. The beaten egg coating also helps the roll to bake into a golden brown color. You can stop there, or do as I did and add some “embellishments.” I chose to sprinkle mine with granulated sugar and adorn it with slivered almonds. I gave it as second light coating of egg, so the almond slivers refrained from burning. I must admit, I felt pretty impressed on the presentation.
The News on the Ooze
On my blog, I want to be real. Transparent. Honest. Therefore, I’m sharing the image of what happened when I pulled this first attempt at Gluten Free Almond Banket from the oven. It cracked and the filling seeped out the side. Apparently, from pictures shared in the Grand Rapids group, this is not a rare occurrence. Many said they just cut it off, once it cooled, and then ate the banket as usual. However, I’m pretty sure that ALL my filling seeped out. As it cooled, I stuffed the filling back inside, and it resealed itself as it cooled.
And voila, here’s the final product. The filling in this Gluten Free Almond Banket was gooey, but I think that’s because it didn’t bake fully in the crust. Don’t get me wrong, it tasted delicious. My friends, family and husband all enjoyed it. However, I had extra filling to play with. Therefore, a second attempt was in order.
Gluten Free Almond Banket Made with Homemade Puff Pastry
While the Schar Puff Pastry box comes with two sheets, I wanted to save the second for another treat. Therefore, I made Dessert for Two 15 Minute Puff Pastry recipe from scratch, using Cup 4 Cup flour. I made it according to Christina’s directions. However, it was very moist. If I made it again, I would use less water, maybe quarter of a cup instead of a third of a cup. Due to the excess moisture, it took a lot of extra flour when rolling.
The outcome of this gluten free almond banket was better, in my opinion. However, this is partly due to extra refrigeration time on the filling, allowing the sugar to absorb the moisture from the egg. It did still split, however it was at the top, and the filling stayed in. I also rolled the completed pastry like a log, using my hands and pressure to seal any cracks. Personally, I feel this helped in preventing it split along the edge.
I am far from a banket expert. This was a fun attempt, and I wanted to share the process with you. I’m including the steps I used, as clear as I can remember. (Nothing messes with your mind quite like having your father in the emergency room!) Below I am including a from scratch dough recipe, with permission, from Kate Teske. She belongs to the same Greater Grand Rapids Facebook group that I do. I have not tried it personally, but this is what her family faithfully uses. Let me know if you choose to use it, and tag me in any pictures you take!
For The Filling!
- 8 oz almond paste
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 egg, beaten
Puff Pastry Dough
- Two sheets of Schar Gluten Free Puff Pastry, thawed on the counter for 3+ hours
Kate Teske Dough Recipe (this is enough for two rolls)
- 8 oz cold butter (2 sticks)
- 2 cups King Arthur Measure for Measure Flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 c ice cold water
- 1 egg beaten, for wash
- 1-2 tbsp sugar for dusting
- 2-3 tbsp slivered almonds for decorating
- Remove Schar gluten free puff pastry from freezer and place on counter to thaw for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the filling. This will be enough for two gluten free almond banket rolls. Place in refrigerator to chill.
- If using Kate's homemade dough recipe, follow these instructions -
- Pulse all but water in a food processor or cut the butter into the flour mix using pastry blender. Drizzle in ice water until the dough forms a ball (I erred on the side of slightly too wet). Roll the dough into an oblong strip, fold into 1/3's, wrap in plastic and let rest in fridge for 20 minutes. Repeat 2 more times. I chose to let it rest in the fridge for over 24 hours after rolling out the last time. (This is somewhat similar to Christina Lane's recipe for 15 minute puff pastry.)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- After filling has chilled, remove it from the refrigerator. Divide filling in half, and roll into log shapes. I made mine into 8" logs, as the Schar Puff Pastry dough is just over 9 inches long.
- Place filling on puff pastry dough and roll up. Some suggest rolling the filling up in the dough loosely. This may help prevent the side from splitting.
- Take care to close the seam as much as possible. You may want to use a touch of water to get the dough wet to help. Pinch the ends of the dough closed, and fold ends under the bottom of the log. I found rolling the log as a whole a few times helped in my second attempt at making this dessert.
- Repeat process with second batch of dough.
- Brush the completed logs entirely with a beaten egg. If desired, sprinkle with sugar and adorn with slivered almonds.
- Place logs on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake gluten free almond banket logs at 400 for 25-30 minutes. Allow to cool completely on cookie sheet before serving.
**This post is not a paid promotion for Schar. However, they did send me a box of their new gluten free puff pastry for free. This post does however include Amazon Affiliate Links. Purchases made through those links provide me a small commission. However, this does not influence the cost of your purchases. Thank you for helping to support this website!**