Childhood Foods & How to Make a Giant Poptart

What were your favorite foods as a child?

Were you a picky eater, and now you are adventurous? Was your biggest enemy green beans and now they are your best friend? What would your lunch look like in the cafeteria as compared to now? WHAT ARE THE FEELS? I want to know!

Recreating a meal from my childhood makes me feel all warm inside. It reminds me of when my mom would make me hot chocolate when I returned with cold, sopping wet clothes that were sticking to my body from playing out in the rain.

Grilled cheeses have evolved from white Great Harvest bread and Kraft American Singles to a variety of breads and cheeses from the farmers market. Pasta dishes went from Kraft Mac & Cheese (my family could sponsor Kraft) to my own pasta cooked in chicken stock and wine with as many vegetables as I can fit in a bowl.

With our growth as humans, comes a transformation of our palate's desires and feelings.

However, we can't forget about those delicious moments that made us elated as growing children. Those nostalgic feelings can be odd and unfamiliar but childhood foods should be celebrated and brought with you to adulthood! And as you grow as a person, you can change those foods to fit this newly developed palate of yours.

What I'm talking about is making your own damn Poptart and foregoing the aluminum wrapped, dried up pastries that used to fit your lifestyle. But now, you are capable of so much more. You are suited for a pastry that is as mature as you are. So, gather up all your friends and make a giant freaking Poptart.

This sheet pan of sweetness is perfect (and so easy!) to add to your brunch on the weekend with friends and family. It's massive, and will accompany those salty hash browns and savory eggs like magic.

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GIANT POPTART - BROWN SUGAR CINNAMON

For the crusts: Make double this recipe for the top and bottom crusts. Make one batch, wrap in plastic wrap, and place in the fridge until ready for use.

2 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup shortening

1/4 cup butter, cold, cut up

1/2 cup cold water + 1-2 tablespoons more if needed

Combine flour and salt in a large bowl. Cut in shortening and butter with a fork or pastry blender until pea sized. Add water, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time until dough is moistened. On a lightly floured surface, roll into a large rectangle to fit a 10x15x1 baking sheet. It is OK to have some come up the sides. Repeat with second batch of dough.

 

For the filling:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter

1 cup dark brown sugar

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon vanilla

Over medium low heat, slightly melt these ingredients together until just combined and gooey.

 

For the icing:

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup of heavy cream, plus more for desired consistency

Combine in small bowl with a whisk.

 

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Place first rolled dough onto baking sheet. Spread filling evenly. Top with second rolled dough and pinch edges together. 

Make 4 to 5 slits on the top dough. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Some of the filling will come through the slits. Cool on a wire rack for 10 to 15 minutes before spreading icing on top. Serve warm or room temperature.

 

You could totally make so many versions of Poptarts with this. Keep the dough recipes the same just change up the filling to satisfy the child in you.

For Strawberry Poptart:

2 pints of strawberries, quartered

1/2 cup sugar

Place these in a medium skillet and heat on medium until it becomes saucy and slightly thick.

For the icing:

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup of heavy cream, plus more for desired consistency

Combine in small bowl with a whisk. Top with rainbow sprinkles.

 

For Wildberry Poptart:

1 pkg. blackberries

1 pkg. blueberries

1 pkg. raspberries

1/2 cup sugar

Place these in a medium skillet and heat on medium until it becomes saucy and slightly thick.

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup of heavy cream, plus more for desired consistency

Combine in small bowl with a whisk. Take 3/4 of the icing and place a few drops of purple food coloring and stir. Take the remaining 1/4 of the icing and place a few drops of blue food coloring and stir. Spread baked poptart with purple icing and swirl the blue icing - you know what I'm taking about. :)