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Quesitos, the Puerto Rican Puff Pastry

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Quesitos Recipe
Quesitos Recipe

Quesitos are one of the most popular pastries in Puerto Rico. Quesito means “little cheese” in Spanish. With this Puerto Rican recipe, you can make these sweet cream cheese breakfast pastries wrapped in layers of light, crisp puff pastry for your whole family!

Cream cheese can also be mixed with vanilla, guava paste or jam and is a favorite in Latin America and the Caribbean. The batter can contain eggs and sour cream similar to cheesecake. Red bean paste, piña colada, almond paste, dulce de leche, dulce de lechosa (spiced papaya jam), and other nuts and fruits. The mixture is stuffed into a puff pastry, coated in a sugary caramelized syrup, and baked.

Although quesitos may not have originated in Puerto Rico, they do add interesting flavors that are hard to find outside the island. They are sold at bakeries and “bomboneras” (literally “chocolate box” or “candy box”, a word also used to refer to sweet shops selling this type of item).

Quesitos

Quesitos

David Taylor
Flaky, golden, and stuffed with sugary cream cheese, these Puerto Rican quesitos are a perfect puff pastry dessert.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Puerto Rican
Servings 12 people
Calories 113 kcal

Equipment

  • Rolling Pin
  • pastry brush
  • pasta or pizza cutter
  • baking sheet

Ingredients
  

  • 1 package frozen puff pastry cut into 5 x 5-inch squares
  • 8 oz cream cheese softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp water to make an egg wash

Honey Sugar Syrup

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • In a medium-size bowl, mix the softened cream and sugar together. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, beat the egg and water. Set aside.
  • Remove frozen puff pastry from the freezer. Work quickly to cut pastry into 5-inch x 5-inch squares, with a sharp knife. The pastry will be easier to cut when frozen.
  • On a clean flat surface, lay out the pastry squares. With a pastry brush, lightly brush the edges of the squares with the egg wash. (This will act as the glue)
  • With a spoon, place about 1 Tbsp of the sweetened cream cheese mix on the left side of the pastry square.
  • From the left side, fold the dough over the cheese and roll the dough.
  • Place the rolled dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Space them an inch apart.
  • Once all the quesitos are rolled out, lightly brush each one with the egg wash. Take a fork and insert into the top of the pastry dough a couple of times, creating tiny holes to allow the steam to escape.
  • Place in preheated oven for about 25-35 minutes or until the pastry dough has completely puffed and the quesitos are golden brown.

Honey Sugar Syrup

  • While the pastries are baking, in a medium pot, bring water, sugar and honey to a simmer for about 20 minutes. Keep warm.
  • Remove quesitos from the oven and immediately brush on the first layer of syrup. Repeat with a second layer of syrup. Let cool for at least 15 minutes. Eat!

Notes

Enjoy your Quesitos within 2 days of baking. No need to refrigerate them, just keep them wrapped or packaged in an air-tight container.
Keyword Pastry, Quesitos

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