I love baking. And everyone and again I like to try baking something a little challenging. I came across a blog recipe for Napoleons. Napoleons are basically puff pastry with a cream or pudding layered inside of it. Then it usually has an icing swirled with chocolate. The recipe I came across was more geared toward children, so the puff pastry was the frozen variety from the store and the cream was Jello. I thought I would challenge myself and make the puff pastry myself and try to make a french pastry cream.
It took two whole days. But it was definitely worth it. It's probably one of my favorite cakes or pastries. I ended up making it three times. And the last time was for my Dads birthday, although I tried to switch the flavors up and do raspberry apricot. Trust me, if you make it stick with the chocolate.
I used a puff pastry recipe from Food Network. I mostly followed instructions and watched a couple youtube videos on how you make it and SUCCESS. My puff just got better and better the more I made it. Experience is key, so definitely don't get discouraged if you don't get it right the first time. Who needs frozen when you can make it yourself with simple ingredients? The store bought one has all types of junk and no real butter! Butter is whats makes the flavor amazing. Definitely a skill worth learning, although a bit time consuming. Click here for the puff pastry recipe!
As for the pastry cream, I found a blog called The Little French Bakery that gives excellent instructions on how to make it. And I was successful the first go. And so impressed with how easy it is to make. No more instant jello for me. And definitely follow what she says and add a little Grand Marnier. It doesn't taste quite right without it.
Prefer the original but this is tasty too!
And for the top part, it's the only part I didn't follow instructions but if you want it to come out pretty you should. Mine was ugly every time but I couldn't be bothered to make it correctly. And it tasted great anyway.
I added almonds and shaved Chocolate!
So a long process. Worth it though. I would definitely make this. In fact, I'm pinning my own blog post so I can find these recipes easily if I ever crave a little slice of Napoleon. I think it originates from France, but many countries have their own versions. I'm digging this one. The French really have the whole baking thing down. Love it!
Check those layers...yum!