Stuffed Horseshoe-Shaped Pastry
We adapted this recipe for presnitz, a beloved pastry in Friuli–Venezia Giulia, from Pasticceria Caffè Pirona in Trieste.
1 1/2 cups raisins
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
1 tsp. honey
6 cups shelled walnuts, chopped
2 cups crumbled sponge cake
3/4 cup candied orange peel, chopped
1 lb. frozen puff pastry, thawed
1. Preheat oven to 365°. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. Chop 1 cup of the raisins and set aside.
2. Put sugar, butter, and honey into the bowl of a standing mixer and beat with the paddle attachment on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Add walnuts, sponge cake, candied orange peel, the reserved chopped raisins, and the remaining 1/2 cup whole raisins and beat on medium speed until well combined, about 1 minute. Add 5 of the eggs, 1 egg at a time, thoroughly beating after each addition. Increase speed to high and beat until thick and mixture has the texture of a chunky paste, 2–3 minutes. Set aside.
3. Cut puff pastry in half lengthwise, roll each sheet out on a lightly floured surface to 18" × 8" rectangles, then transfer each to a prepared baking sheet. Position one of the long sides of pastry close to you. Spread half the filling on lowest third of pastry, leaving a 1" border on each end. Carefully roll pastry around filling jelly-roll style and pinch ends to seal. Turn pastry seam side down, then draw ends toward each other to create a horseshoe shape. Repeat process with remaining pastry and filling.
4. Beat the remaining egg with 1 tsp. water in a small bowl and brush each pastry with some of the egg wash. Bake until pastries are golden brown, 30–40 minutes. Set aside to cool completely. Presnitz will keep in an airtight container for up to 1 week.