Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Vegan MoFo - P is for Pinwheels

Pinwheels were one of the finger foods my mum used to serve at big parties throughout my childhood. I used to love helping out with making them as it meant that I would get to snack on the ones that had slight imperfections. Pinwheels are made from puff pastry sheets spread with finely diced toppings which are rolled up, sliced into bize-sized pieces and baked in the oven until flaky.

Mum's pinwheels always used to be made with tomato paste, onions, bacon and cheese. I wanted mine to taste fairly similar so I used tofu bacon and vegan cheese and mixed a bit of pesto with a store bought pizza sauce for an extra dimension of flavour. They are a little bit fiddly to make but once you get used to the process, it does becomes easier. The recipe includes some step by step photos to guide you through although the late afternoon light streaming into my kitchen interfered a little.

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3 vegan puff pastry sheets
1/4 - 1/3 cup tomato paste/pizza sauce
3 teaspoons vegan basil pesto
1/2 red onion, finely diced
1/2 batch tofu bacon, finely diced
3 large button mushrooms, finely diced
200g vegan cheese, grated
olive oil spray

Place a sheet of frozen puff pastry on a large chopping board and cover with approx 2 tablespoons of tomato paste/pizza sauce mixed with a teaspoon of pesto. Try to spread the mixture evenly and ensure that the left and right sides are covered as close as you can get to the edges. The sides closest and furtherest away from you can be left plain.

Sprinkle a 1/3 of each of the onion, mushrooms and tofu bacon on top followed by 1/3 of the vegan cheese. (The photo below was taken prior to cheese being added).

By this time the puff pastry sheet should have thawed out just enough for it to be rolled up. Starting at the end closest to you, roll the pastry over to 1/4 of the length of the sheet then continue rolling tightly until you get to the end. With a sharp knife cut sections of about 1cm width along the sheet.

Place the pinwheels onto a tray lined with baking paper and cook in the oven at 180C for about 15-20 minutes or until they are flaky. Repeat the process two more times and enjoy your pinwheels!


  1. love the look of these but I agree it can be fiddly - I have tried doing these as cheeseymite - admire you veganising this - hope it brought back some childhood flavours

  2. Yum... they look great! I don't think I've ever had a savory pinwheel but these make me want to.

  3. Love those pinwheels! And I'm going to try out your tofu bacon soon--it looks amazing.

  4. P is also for "Please can I have some of that?" Thanks for sharing your recipe, looks awesome! :)

  5. These are so impressive! I've made scrolls before, but never done pinwheels with puff pastry. Definitely something to try.

  6. I know I can't eat them but they look so so good. Wonder if it would work with gf puff pastry. Hmmmm. My mum used to do a simple tomato sauce and cheese one which I loved.

  7. They look so good, perfect finger food or I bet they'd be great for pot lucks/picnics. I'm going to try them with ready-made gluten free pastry.

    And I know what you mean about the sun, each afternoon I go to take photos and the sun is streaming in on my photo table!

  8. Oh. My. Goodness. You are making me so jealous right now--I SO wish I could eat puff pastry. LUCKY! This looks too good :)

  9. These were one of my FAVOURITE things as a kid, and I had completely forgotten about them. They look terrific. Thank you so much for the recipe, I can't wait to give this a try!

  10. Thanks Johanna, these definitely brought back some memories and the flavours were close enough to keep me satisfied.

    Thanks coldandsleepy, I don't recall ever having a sweet pinwheel, these are the only ones I have even known.

    Thanks Jes, there seems to be a lot of fairly similar tofu bacon recipes around. I sampled a few different ones and ended up sticking with this one.

    Thanks Stacey, you made me giggle. I would love to be able to send some over your way.

    Thanks Kari, they are a great finger food item for parties and are always really popular.

    Thanks K, I wish you could eat them! I haven't used GF puff pastry before, hopefully they would work out well with it.

    Thanks Mandee, I don't mind eating them cold so they would be good for potlucks/picnics too.

    Thanks Cara, what a shame you can't eat puff pastry. Are there any GF varieties over your way?

    Thanks Mattheworbit, they were my absolute favourite childhood thing too! I have tried a different vegan version before but it didn't work out anywhere near as good as these ones.