“How is that possible?” I hear you ask… Well, since it would have been a lot to make full-sized pastries for sampling, I opted to make minis and, dare I say it (after I’ve already published the full-sized recipe), I think I might have preferred the small version. I also know a group of boys who would be keen to test this theory out with me this week – my Petits Chefs!
So this Monday we set out to recreate the mini version of the recipe…
We cut up some fresh fruits and drained some canned fruits…
And made some crème pâtissière…
Cracked and separated some eggs…
Whisked some sugar, corn starch and the eggs…Then carefully added hot milk…
Then whisked and cooked until it thickened…
After that, we added some butter…
And whisked a little more until it was smooth. Our custard didn’t get super smooth but since it was being hidden inside puff pastry, it didn’t matter too much. I was impressed the boys didn’t get any cooked egg in their crème (I am always straining bits of cooked egg out of mine!!) – you need to really keep an eye on it and whisk constantly and the boys were pretty vigilant about this!
Then came the fun part…
Yep, I let them add chocolate to some of theirs!
And then they were all ready to bake..
25 minutes in the oven gave us plenty of time to go over the recipe and clean up too!
Aren’t they gorgeous? Just like in a bakery!
Fruit and chocolate Danish pastries
Easy - yet elegant and impressive - breakfast pastries with puff pastry, pastry cream and fruit or chocolate!
Prep Time45 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Chill Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour40 minutes
For the crème pâtissière
1 cup (250 mL) milk
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into small pieces
For the pastries
4 x sheets frozen puff pastry (each of mine were 227g and 10x10-inches/ 25x25cm)
Fresh or canned apricots, halved (drained if they are from a can)
A few plums, thinly sliced
Approx. 1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 large egg, lightly beaten, for eggwash
Make the crème pâtissière:
In a medium pot, bring the milk to a boil over medium-high heat (or you can do this in a microwave).
In the meantime, whisk the egg, yolk, sugar and cornstarch together in a separate medium pot.
Once the milk has just reached a boil, remove it from the heat and pour a couple of teaspoons of milk into the egg yolk mixture and whisk until combined. Whisk quickly so you don’t scramble the eggs.
Slowly pour in the rest of the hot milk, whisking constantly, and place this pot over medium-high heat.
Continue to whisk until the mixture starts to thicken and produce large, slow bubbles. This should take 3 to 5 minutes. It should be quite thick (it should coat the back of a wooden spoon).
Remove the pot from the heat and transfer the mixture to a clean bowl and whisk gently to cool the mixture down slightly. Let it sit for a few minutes.
Whisk in the vanilla and then the butter, a couple of pieces at a time, until completely incorporated.
Cover the crème pâtissière with plastic wrap, with the wrap touching the surface to prevent a skin forming, allow it to come to room temperature (you can use it in the recipe now or refrigerate until you are ready to use).
Assemble the pastries
Pre-heat the oven to 375˚F. Line two baking trays with parchment paper. Unroll the thawed, but chilled, puff pastry sheets and cut each sheet into 9 squares. Place the pastry squares on the baking trays.
Place a heaping teaspoon’s worth of the crème pâtissière in the middle of each pastry square and use the back of a spoon to spread this across the middle of the square, diagonally.
Place an apricot half or a few slices of fruit or some chocolate chips on top of the crème pâtissière. Fold two opposite corners of the pastry in to meet over the top of the apricot/ fruit/ chocolate.
Brush the bottom corner of the pastry with some eggwash and lay the other corner on top, pressing slightly so it sticks.
Brush the whole pastry (not the apricots) with eggwash and sprinkle with a little pearl sugar.
Bake for 25 minutes or until the pastry is golden and puffed.
Remove from the oven, transfer the pastries to a wire cooling rack and allow to cool slightly.
Serve warm or at room temperature. Best enjoyed the day they are made!
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