The Tuesdays with Dorie recipe from Baking Chez Moi this week was more about assembly than actual cooking or baking per se. Pailles (meaning “straws”) are a puff pastry creation, not unlike palmiers where the trick is working with really cold pastry.
I used an all-butter puff pastry from President’s Choice and my sheet of pastry wasn’t quite the same dimensions as Dorie’s (it was a square, not a rectangle, and smaller) so I just did what I could. You start out by rolling the sheet slightly, then brushing with egg wash, sprinkling with sugar and then folding it in half. You repeat this process twice before you place it in the freezer to get nice and cold before you slice and bake.
I used coconut sugar out of sheer laziness (I’d been for a long run earlier that day and my legs didn’t want to be bothered going all the way into the basement to fetch the white sugar so I used what I had on hand but it made the cookies a little darker than I’d have liked). Oh well, they still tasted good!
Dorie calls for slicing the cold pastry into 1/4-inch strips but I found it near impossible to slice them so finely without the pastry cracking or folding over on itself so I settled for 1/3-inch strips. You then lay the strips cut side up closely together in groups of 3 on the baking tray, sprinkle with a little more sugar and then cover with parchment and a cooling rack then bake. The rack will help the cookies remain thin-ish, they’re not meant to be puffy, rather, thin and crunchy. I’m used to covering puff pastry cookies like this with baking trays so that’s what I used and I think I’d still do this another time because it covers all the cookies with even weight (my cookie racks are not that heavy).
These are then cooled and layered with jam and dusted with a touch of icing sugar to create a simple yet impressive dessert/ I baked off one of my puff pastry rolls and the other is in the freezer still, waiting to be baked off for Easter. None of the stages was hard in this recipe, just a little fussy (especially if precision is not your thing but even if it’s not, you might find the assembly of these strangely soothing!) but when you take the time to do this properly, the results are fabulous. I’ll make these again, for sure!
Get the recipe for Dorie Greenspan’s pailles here or on page 243 of Baking Chez Moi.
Tuesdays with Dorie participants don’t publish the recipes on our blogs, so you’re encouraged to purchase Baking Chez Moi for yourself which you can do on Amazon (this link should bring you to the Amazon store in your country) or for free worldwide shipping, buy from The Book Depository. Then join us, baking our way through the book!
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MY BOOK! In the French kitchen with kids releases July 31, 2018! Click here for pre-order details!