Buttery and flaky, these hors d'oeuvres are like little tarts, only simpler to make. Follow our topping suggestions, or try your own: sautéed mushrooms and stilton cheese, caramelized onions and anchovies, gruyère and chopped toasted walnuts ... let your imagination be your guide.
3/4 cup unsalted butter
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
3 to 4 tbsp. ice water
2/3 cup crème fraîche
5 to 6 oz. smoked salmon
2 1/2 tablespoons brined capers, chopped
How to Make It
Cut butter into 1/2-in. cubes and freeze in a single layer until very cold, 10 to 20 minutes. In a food processor, whirl flour and salt until blended. Add butter and pulse on and off just until bits of butter are about the size of peas. In a small bowl, lightly beat egg and yolk with 3 tbsp. ice water. Add egg mixture, about half at a time, and pulse just until evenly moistened and holding together (you may need to add 1 more tbsp. ice water as you're pulsing).
Flatten the dough into 2 rough squares, each about 6 in. wide. Wrap squares in wax paper. Chill until cold, at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
Preheat oven to 350°. Remove dough from refrigerator and let stand 5 minutes. Unwrap and, on a lightly floured surface, roll dough halves into 1/8-in.-thick squares, 10 to 11 in. each.
Transfer each square to a rimmed baking sheet and prick all over with a fork. Bake until medium brown, 25 to 35 minutes. Cool on pan, about 30 minutes. Spread with crème fraîche, dividing evenly, and top with smoked salmon and capers. Cut into 2-in. squares.
Note: Nutritional analysis is per 2-piece serving.
This dough is the ultimate kitchen workhorse: It's fast to make and will keep in the freezer for up to a week (let it thaw 1/2 hour before rolling out, or until it's pliable) or in the refrigerator for 3 days. You can also bake the dough a day ahead and top it just before serving. This recipe can easily be doubled, but if you want to triple or quadruple it, make 2 separate batches of dough.