creativity needed ... phyllo
I have a lot of phyllo in my freezer and I'm going to an all day bbq this weekend. I'd rather not have to bake there so worry that any phyllo dish will end up soggy. Am I right? Or is there something I can do ahead and that will still be tasty a day later (or even just many hours later ... I am willing to bake at home in the am)
I am thinking something ap. like (cheese, jam puffs) or sweet (but not too heavy as after a lot of other food I don't think baklavah will call out to anyone)
Here's a really easy idea for phyllo nests that you can make ahead of time. The only thing is storing all of them, but it's great to make ahead of time and takes no time to finish up at the party itself.
This is for a light, sweet dessert. But you could easily substitute the sugar with salt and fill it with something savory.
Keeping phyllo rolled up, slice (jellyroll-style) by half inches. Open/tangle up strips, drizzle with butter and sugar, mix/tangle more to spread butter throughout. Pull out enough to make single-serving-size nests. Shape nests, keeping phyllo strips fairly loose. Bake, let cool, then store. Fill with macerated, sliced strawberries and top with whipped cream.
I've made little mini bastilla with chicken, in little cigar shaped rolls which turned out well.
In addition to mini spanakopita (spinach pies) and tiropita (cheese pies), I've also made sweet triangles filled with rhubarb or apple pie filling, as well as chicken dijonnaise triangles (using precooked chicken, mayo and dijon).
With at least the spanakopita and tiropita, you can prepare the pastries on a cookie sheet, brush with butter, then freeze or refrigerate until you are ready to bake.
Some brie/chevre/cream cheese with red pepper jelly would be a quick filling if you're in a hurry.
Could also make a samosa-type or empanada-type filling.
Yes, the cigar rolls are great as finger food that can be made ahead of time and re-heated just to crisp back up.
Easy fillings I've made for cigar rolls include:
> Ground beef (or ground chicken) sauteed with minced onion, curry powder, salt and pepper, mix in just enough mashed potato to hold it all together, toss in finely chopped basil to finish (optional).
> Finely chopped mushrooms (can whiz up in a food processor) sauteed with shallots, white wine, salt, pepper till wine has evaporated, toss in finely chopped tarragon or flat-leaf parsley to finish.
You can make phyllo basket ahead. Cut phyllo to squares, stack/layer onto muffin tins (of course, butter between layers - guilty pleasure of working with phyllo). Fill it with anything you like basically. You can do half of them with savory fillings, the other half with sweet perhaps?
Beggars purse is great suggestion too! Or, triangular shape. I guess, as long as the filling is drier type of filling, nothing too liquidy, I am pretty sure it won't go soggy. You can always have some dipping sauce on the side. :)