A beautiful, layered, French dessert - perfect for an afternoon dessert or tea.
Use product immediately upon removal from refrigerator as there is no need to thaw! No need to use flour and a rolling pin to stretch the dough.
Dough will roll out and cut easier if it is chilled. If you're trying to create a specific shape, keep the pastry as cold as possible (but not frozen) and it will be easier to make precise cuts.
If you want to keep the inside from rising as much as the edges, just use a paring knife to score a border. Don’t cut the dough all the way though! Use a fork to prick the dough. The pastry will still be light and flaky with the edges puffed up and the center will stay down.
Pop the dough in the fridge after working with it, while the oven preheats. This step gives the fat in the dough a chance to re-solidify, to get an even better baking result.
Egg-wash: Just before baking, brush your puff pastry with egg wash (1 large egg with about 2 tablespoons water, beaten) to give it an attractive shine and color.
To seal the pastry edges for any stuffed pocket-style pastry, just brush a thin layer of water or egg whites along the edges and press them together to make them stick.
Crimp edges of smaller pastries like hand pies with a fork. Larger pastries can be crimped with your fingertips.
Serve soon after baking! Puff Pastry is best when fresh, so ideally bake close to serving. Only few recipes are great to make ahead. Puff Pastry is best when baked and served the same day.
To unroll the dough, remove dough from package and gently separate the dough and parchment paper from the roll, so that the dough on paper begins to lay flat. Be careful not to separate the dough from the parchment paper. There may be some sticking, but the dough and paper should easily pull away from the roll.
Once the dough is lying flat on the baking tray, cut off or tuck any excess paper under, so it does not hang over the edge.
1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
2. Unroll refrigerated Puff Pastry Dough and cut into three even pieces. Place dough on a baking sheet with the parchment paper and then poke all over with a fork. Cover with an additional piece of parchment paper and then place a baking sheet on top of parchment (pressing down lightly on top) and place in oven.
3. Cook for 15 minutes, then remove top baking sheet and top parchment and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from oven to cool.
4. Make from scratch, or prepare to get pastry cream for filling the Napoleons.
5. When cool, cut each pastry section into four equal pieces. Top one piece of puff pastry with the pastry cream, cover second section with more pastry cream and stack on top. Repeat with all pieces, but keep 4 top layers for later.
6. To make the chocolate raspberry ganache: in a medium sauce pan, heat heavy cream and butter over medium heat (until almost boiling). Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips, sugar, and raspberry preserves, whisking until smooth. Allow to cool slightly. then spread it over the third top pastry layer of the Napoleon, and place on top of the pastries. Garnish with raspberries or mint leaves.