So, today I found out (which incidentally and totally unrelated, happens to be the name of my brother-in-law’s website- TodayIFoundOut.com) about creamy layered, puff pastry dessert Napoleon. Originally French, this dessert was called “mille-feuille “ which literally translates to “a thousand sheets”. Traditionally its made up of 3 layers of puff pastry (pâte feuilletée) and layered with pastry cream (crème pâtissière- don’t you just love how french words make it sound fancier?) and dusted with powdered sugar. However today, the many variants and adaptations of the original recipe have made the name “Napoleon” more loosely acceptable for layered puff pastry desserts….which justifies why I call it so.
My recipe for a Raspberry Napoleon which I think would make a lovely Valentine’s Day Dessert idea has three parts to it- the puff pastry, the cream filling and the Raspberry topping and before you think that’s too much work, let me show you how simple it really is…
1 sheet of Puff Pastry
1/2 cup of Cream Cheese (I found strawberry cream cheese, but regular works too.)
1 cup of Whipped Cream
1/2 Cup of Sugar + 2 tbsp for the cream filling
1 tbsp Corn Starch
Powdered sugar for dusting
– Unfold a sheet of puff pastry and using a heart shaped cookie cutter cut out 4 hearts.
– Using a smaller heart shaped cutter, make a mark inside the bigger heart. Don’t cut all the way through, you’re just trying to make a marking you can see later.
– Place the puff pastry hearts on a cookie sheet, lined with wax paper (not foil like I did). And bake at 425F for 10-12 minutes until golden and crispy.
– In the mean time, dissolve the sugar in 2-3 tablespoons of water and bring to a bubble.
– Throw in 5 or 6 raspberries and crush them so they color and flavor the syrup.
– When the syrup starts boiling and thickening slightly, add a tablespoon of corn starch dissolved in a little water, let it boil a little and then lower the heat.
– When the syrup is thick, turn off the heat and toss in the remaining raspberries and coat them in the syrupy goodness.
– In a mixing bowl, add the cream cheese, sugar and mix well.
– Fold in the whipped cream to make the filling light and fluffy.
– To assemble the dessert, start by cutting out the inner heart we marked earlier…as faint as it might be it’s a good guidline.
– Spoon some of the cream mix in the heart cavity and then top with the some raspberries.
– Repeat the layers again.
– Dust powdered sugar over the top of the raspberries and you can place the heart you cut out on top too.