Mille-feuille, aka Napoleon

October 27, 2012 · 4 comments Print This Post

Mille Feuile

Mille Feuile

This month’s Daring Bakers challenge was a Mille-feuille, something I’ve seen before, but never tasted, much less made.

Lots of instructions, but actually easy to make and pretty damn tasty too.

Cliff Note’s instructions:

  1. Make three 6×12″ puff pastry.
  2. Spread pastry cream over 2 of the layers as you stack them (the top layer is left bare).
  3. Spread royal icing over the top layer.
  4. Drizzle melted chocolate over the royal icing and comb in chocolate for a better looking Mille-feuille.

Mille-feuille

Pâte feuilletée (puff pastry)

  • I used the old reliable Pâte Brisée (recipe can be found here), as I had some already in the fridge from making apple turnovers.
  • Roll out to 18×12″, then cut into three 6×12″ sheets.  Place on a parchment lined baking sheet, prick all over with a fork, cover with another sheet of parchment paper.  Then place another baking sheet on top of the top layer of parchment.  If you have light weight baking sheets, add more weight by placing a 9×12″ Pyrex baking dish on the top baking sheet.
  • Bake for 15 minutes at 400°.
  • Remove Pyrex/baking sheet/top layer of parchment and bake another 10 minutes.
  • Remove from oven when brown and cool on wire rack.

Crème Pâtissière (pastry cream)

2 cups whole milk or 1/2 and 1/2, or heavy cream (use only one of the three)
¼ cup cornstarch
200gm/7 oz/1 cup powdered sugar
4 egg yolks (save 2 of the whites for the royal icing)
2 eggs
4 tbsp butter, cubed
2 tsp vanilla

  • Mix the cornstarch with ½ cup of milk and stir until dissolved.
  • Heat the remaining milk in a saucepan with the sugar, dissolving the sugar and bringing the milk to the boil. Remove from heat.
  • Beat the whole eggs into the cornstarch/milk mixture. Then beat in the egg yolks. Temper the eggs by pouring in 1/3 of the hot milk, stirring constantly to prevent the eggs from cooking.
  • Bring the remaining milk back to the boil, and add the egg mixture, whisking constantly as your pour. Keep whisking on a medium heat until the mixture starts to thicken.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat and thoroughly whisk the pastry cream. At this stage the pastry cream can look slightly lumpy, but a good whisking soon makes it smoother.
  • Beat in the butter and vanilla until fully incorporated.
  • Pour the pastry cream into a stainless steel or ceramic bowl, and then place clingfilm over the surface to stop a skin forming.
  • Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight to give the pastry cream time to further thicken.

Royal Icing:

2 egg whites
2 tsp lemon juice
300g/14oz/2 cups powdered sugar

  • Whisk 2 egg whites with 2 teaspoons lemon juice until lightly frothy.
  • Whisk in the powdered sugar on a low setting until smooth and combined. The mixture should be thick enough to leave trails on the surface. If it’s too thin, whisk in a bit more powdered sugar.

Chocolate topping:

  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate

Assembly:

  • Lay one sheet on the board and spread half the crème patisserie evenly over the top.
  • Take the second sheet and place it on top, pressing down lightly with your hands to ensure that it sticks to the filling.
  • Spread the remaining crème pâtissière and place the last sheet of pastry on top, pressing down again. (don’t worry about it being messy, you can fix that later)
  • Place in the fridge while you make the royal icing and melt the chocolate.
  • Make the royal icing.  Melt the chocolate, then place in a Ziplock bag with then tip cut off (you can fine tip).
  • Spread the royal icing over the top, then drizzle the chocolate in lines about 1/4″ apart from each other.
  • Comb the chocolate into the icing, going in opposite directions with each pass.
  • Refrigerate about 4 hours, then using a sharp knife, but into 8-10 pieces.

Our October 2012 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Suz of Serenely Full. Suz challenged us to not only tackle buttery and flaky puff pastry, but then take it step further and create a sinfully delicious Mille Feuille dessert with it!

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

What's for dessert? October 29, 2012 at 1:17 am

Awesome! Looks so delicious and tempting!

chef_d October 29, 2012 at 3:33 am

Very nicely done. Beautiful flaky layers!

Suz October 29, 2012 at 4:08 am

Your mille feuille looks delicious! I love those fantastic layers. The pastry looks so crisp and flaky. Great job!

sandie November 2, 2012 at 11:07 am

Looks great and I like how you make it sound so easy!!

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: