Ask any Trinbagonian what’s their favorite dessert/snack and I can guarantee it would be almost impossible to find someone who would not say currants roll. A lovely flaky dough filled with cinnamon, brown sugar and currants.. layers and layers of island delight. There are some who like it somewhat wet or moist and compact and then there are those of us who look for that balance of perfect pasty exterior and a filling you’re only too excited to bite into. Before I drool on my keyboard, lets get to the recipe…
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup butter (cold, in cubes)
1/2 cup veg shortening (cold, in cubes)
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup or more ice cold water
1 1/2 cups currants
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 cup melted butter
1 egg + 1 tablespoon milk
* Sugar for sprinkling (optional)
Notes. The key to flaky pasty crust is to use cold ingredients (water/butter) and don’t overwork with your hands as the natural heat can warm things up quickly.
Let’s start off by making the dough for the pastry, since we’ve got to give it time to chill in the fridge for at least 1/2 an hour (2hrs is best). Cut the chilled butter and shortening (place in the freezer for about 25 minutes if you want), then sift the flour into a food processor, add the salt and cubed butter and vegetable shortening. Remember it’s important to use ice cold water. Before adding any water, give the mixture a few pulses in the food processor.. until you have the texture of little peas. Now start adding the water, about 3/4 cup to start and work it until you have a dough which will start to take shape. Add more water was needed. (it will look crumbly)
Empty the now semi-formed dough onto a flour-dusted surface and (work quickly) shape into a smooth dough ball. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to chill for about 2 hours.
As the dough chills in the fridge you can make the mixture for the filling. Very simple – in a large bowl, place the cinnamon, currants and brown sugar and give everything a good mix. If you want to be a bit creative you can certainly add some raisins and a drop of vanilla.. but remember that the vanilla is not a traditional ingredient.
It’s now time to put things together and get these tasty treats in the oven. Cut the main dough ball into 2 pieces, then roll out the first one on a flour dusted surface. Be sure to dust your hands and rolling pin with flour as well. This dough can be a bit sticky. Roll until you have a thin (less than 1/2 centimeter) rectangle shape. Now brush the surface with 1/2 of the melted butter.
It’s now time to add the lovely stuffing and roll into shape. Pour 1/2 of the currant mixture onto the flattened dough, but leave about 2.5 centimeters as a border without any. Try to make sure it’s spread evenly. Now as if rolling a fat cigar (very tight) roll into a cylindrical shape. Remember the tighter you can roll this, the more lovely layers the finished currants roll will have. Be sure to pinch the ends to create a seal.
Repeat with the next piece of dough and remaining currant mixture. And set onto a parchment line baking sheet.
Beat the egg and milk and brush the surface of each roll to give it a lovely golden color when it’s done in the oven. The final step (optional) is to sprinkle with some granulated sugar before placing into a 350 degree oven for about 50 minutes (middle rack). You’re looking for a lovely golden color.
The scent coming out of your oven will have you impatient (can you say eager anticipation?)and your children will be pacing and finding every excuse in the book to see what’s going on in the kitchen.
Allow to cool before slicing (the traditional way is to slice on an angle) so it has enough time to set and not fall apart especially if you’re using a blunt knife (I used a serrated blade). BTW you can brush with melted butter and sprinkle more sugar immediately after it comes out of the oven for that extra touch.
Yes, it’s that time again. I’ve got a wicked cookbook “Italian Kitchen – Traditional and contemporary recipes for perfect Italian cuisine” to give away to one lucky reader and I’m hoping it’s you. Each recipe comes with a beautiful picture so you know what the dish is supposed to look like, simple step by step instructions and best of all.. they’re very easy to put together. All you have to do is leave me a comment in the comment section below and your name will be automatically entered..
There are two bonus ways you can have your name entered in the contest, giving you 3 chances at winning. Along with leaving a comment below, go to the Facebook fan page and/or the Youtube cooking channel and leave a comment there.
Here are the rules pertaining to winning this cookbook.
– contest is open to everyone globally (even if you won something here before)
– there are 3 ways to enter your name (see above)
– 1 winner will be chosen at random (if you left 3 comments, your name will be entered 3 times)
– contest is open from April 21 – to midnight May 1.
– winner will be announced within 1 week of the official close date.
– the winner will have 1 week to contact us with their mailing address
– we will cover all shipping expenses (standard mail)
I hope you take a moment to enter your name as I’d really like to mail this wonderful cookbook out to you. It’s simple, free and fun!