A flaky golden crust with spicy flavorful paneer filling. A perfect snack with tea – Paneer Puff Pastry Turnovers! Who would not love a warm savory puff?
In many places in India, you get this at breakfast or snack shops. They used to be a favorite growing up. You get this similar puff pastry in the US, but most of the time it is with sweet filing. I did find a similar one in Germany which was savory filled with spinach and feta, which was delicious. I had one everyday on the way to work, picking it at the train station. Oh…I had forgotten all about counting calories then 🙂
I wanted to make these at home. Making puff pastry sheets can be hard, but guess what? You can buy these in stores and that makes this the easiest appetizer ever! Just add your favorite filling – potatoes, ground meat, paneer, cheese maybe? Oh…I am already looking forward to have these with my tea this evening!
These pastry puffs are perfect for a party. I have been making these for a very long time and they are my go to appetizer when I have friends visiting. These can be easily prepared in advance and baked when needed.
You can make these puff pastries in the air fryer or in the oven. When I need to make these puff’s in bulk for a gathering, I use the oven. However when just preparing puffs for two, my Philips air fryer works best. I don’t have to heat the oven and the house for just two puffs. Let’s get cooking!
Preparing Paneer Filling for Puff Pastry
Before you start preparing the filling, get the puff pastry squares out of the freezer and let them thaw. You can use puff pastry squares or sheets, but I prefer squares as they are pre-cut to the size and saves me some effort.
For the filling, you need paneer. The paneer can be homemade or store bought. I made the paneer for this recipe in the instant pot, which I love for my everyday cooking. If you are not aware of it, check it out here.
Mash the paneer using a masher or with your gentle hands. You can also just cut them into small pieces. We will cook the paneer with onions, tomatoes and spices in a pan. I add more salt and red chili powder as it will not feel as spicy once filled in the puff pastry.
Paneer filling can be stored easily in refrigerator for about a week or freezed for longer. This filling is very versatile and can be used as a side with roti/naan…it is basically paneer scramble or paneer bhurji!
If you dont have puff pastry, use this filling to make paneer sandwiches or stuffed parathas or quesadilla’s.
Preparing Paneer Puff Pastry Turnovers in the Air Fryer or Oven
If using oven, set it to preheat to 450°F when you start preparing the puff pastries.
Place the paneer filing at the center or closer to one edge of the puff pastry square.
Gently fold the square and pinch to the other side to make a triangle. All the edges should be closed. Use a fork to seal the edges well.
Beat the egg white and brush them on the top side of the stuffed puff pastry. Sprinkle some nigella seeds to get the perfect looking puff! Nigella seeds are optional. You could also use sesame seeds if you like.
Now, pop them in the oven or air fryer. For the oven, bake at 450°F for 10-12 minutes. For the air fryer, place two stuffed puff pastries into the air fryer basket. Bake at 390°F for 10-12 minutes. Flip them at about 7 min.
Don’t they look just so warm and welcoming.
Some people like to enjoy them with tomato ketchup, while others with mint chutney. All of them surely love a cup of warm tea or coffee with them.
I love the Maggi Hot and Spicy Tomato Ketchup with these puffs. If you like a spice kick, you can find this in your nearest indian grocery store.
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A flaky golden crust with spicy flavorful paneer filling. Perfect appetizer for a party that can be prepared ahead of time. So easy and delicious!
- 6 squares Puff Pastry
- 1 Egg White to brush for a glaze
- 1 tsp Nigella seeds or Kalonji (optional)
- 200 gm Paneer or Cottage cheese mashed or cubed (homemade or store bought)
- 1 tbsp Ghee or Oil
- 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds or Jeera
- 1/2 Onion diced
- 1 Tomato diced
- 1/2 tsp Salt adjust to taste
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric or Haldi powder
- 1/2 tsp Cayenne or Red Chili powder adjust to taste
- 1/2 tsp Garam Masala adjust to taste
Remove the frozen puff pastry sheets from the freezer and let them thaw while you prepare the filling.
Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds to it. When the seeds start to change color in about 30 seconds, add the diced onions. Cook the onions for 3-4 minutes stirring frequently till they start to turn golden brown.
Add the chopped tomatoes. Cook them for 3-4 minutes, until they form a thick mixture with the onions.
Add the salt, turmeric, red chili powder and garam masala. Mix well.
Add the paneer and mix with the onion tomato masala. Cook for 3 minutes until the paneer becomes soft.
The paneer filling is ready. You can also enjoy this as paneer bhurji or scramble along with roti or naan.
If baking in oven, preheat oven to 400°F.
Gently fold it and pinch to the other side to make a triangle. All the edges should be closed. Use a fork to seal the edges well.
Beat the egg white. Brush the egg whites on the top side of the stuffed puff pastry. Sprinkle some nigella seeds to get the perfect looking puff!
If using an oven, bake for 12-15 minutes until the paneer puff's are golden browned.
If using an air fryer, place 2 stuffed puff pastries into the air fryer basket. Bake at 390°F for 10-12 minutes. Flip the puffs at about 7 min.
Remove the puff pastries from the oven/air fryer into a serving dish and let them cool for couple of minutes. Enjoy with a dip or chutney and a cup of hot tea.
- For this recipe, you can just mash paneer or just cut it into small cubes.
- If you like to skip egg, brush with melted butter or olive oil.
- To prepare these ahead of time, stuff the puff pastries and freeze them. When ready to cook, take out of the freezer and let them thaw for some time (not completely to room temperature, we want the puff pastry to still be cool to get a flaky puffs). Brush with egg white and pop them in the oven.
Note: Nutrition values are my best estimates. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.
If you like this recipe, you might also like Tandoori Paneer Naan Pizza, Cauliflower Tikka Bites and Taro Fries in the air fryer recipe. Join the Easy Air Fryer Cooking group on Facebook and follow my page PipingPotCurry. I am going to be posting many more air fryer recipes and the group with be a great way to spark discussions about air fryer.
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