Ryan has been an online writer for over a decade and loves to share and educate.
If you have some extra puff pastry and/or custard left lying around, one good way to not let it go to waste is to turn it into a Cremeschnitte. This European classic consists of custard filling and whipped cream sandwiched between two strips of baked puff pastry and garnished with powdered sugar dust. Here's a simple variation with espresso flavor.
Cremeschnitte has no official origin albeit having Austro-Hungarian roots. It's a favored dessert among countries like Romania, Serbia, Bosnia, and Poland just to name a few. But many pastry chefs around the world should have a good idea of what they're dealing with in its undertaking.
Again, this is a pretty simple dessert to make especially if you plan to use pre-processed ingredients which can count for everything; the puff pastry sheets, custard, and whipped cream are all sold ready-made at your grocery store. However, for those who aren't afraid to take their time to learn how to make an authentic Cremeschnitte, then this simple recipe will show them the ropes.
The version in this recipe is flavored with espresso but it isn't necessary as it can be easily swapped for something else as desired. As a bonus, this recipe will include some simple variations to try in the meantime. Now on with the show...
|Prep time||Cook time||Ready in||Yields|
3 hours 20 min
3 hours 35 min
For the puff pastry:
- 1 pack puff pastry
- 4 tbsp icing sugar
For the custard filling:
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 3 egg yolks
- 4 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 tsp instant espresso
- 4 gelatin sheets
For the whipped cream:
- 1 cup heavy cream, cold
- 1 tbsp icing sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 190°C. Roll out the puff pastry to 1/4" thickness on a flour-dusted surface.
- Transfer the pastry to a baking sheet lined with parchment and dust the surface evenly with the icing sugar. Cover the surface with more parchment followed by a wire rack.
- Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the pastry turns golden and is crisp. Remove the pastry from the oven. Trim the edges and cut into two long strips using a sharp knife. Set the strips to cool on a rack.
- Place the gelatin leaves in a bowl filled with cold water to soften. Set aside.
- Whisk together the heavy cream, half of the sugar, and vanilla extract in a medium non-reactive saucepan. Bring the sweetened cream to boil over medium heat, then simmer.
- Whisk together the egg yolks and remaining sugar in a bowl until smooth and pale. Whisk in 1/4 of the simmering heavy cream until fully combined. Return the mixture to the saucepan and continue whisking while simmering until the mixture turns thick.
- Remove the custard from the heat. Whisk in the espresso until fully incorporated.
- Remove the gelatin leaves from the surface and wring them to remove excess water. Add them to the custard and whisk until they melt. Leave the custard to cool to room temperature.
- Place a mixing bowl and whisk over an ice bath. Whisk the heavy cream until it forms soft peaks. Whisk in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract until they dissolve.
- Place one of the puff pastry strips on a baking dish. Layer its surface with enough of the custard to reach 1" high. Top the custard with half of the whipped cream. Place and flatten the second pastry strip on top of the first one. Refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight before serving.
- When it's time to serve the Cremeschnitte, cut it into 2" cubes with a sharp knife.
As promised, here are some simple variations to try out with the Cremeschenitte.
- Fruit garnish - After dusting the surface of the Cremeschnitte, place fresh or frozen fruit (raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, etc) on top of the surface before serving.
- Cream cheese - Substitute softened cream cheese for the heavy cream in an equal amount. Add a stick of butter to the mix.
- Chocolate - Add a chocolate bar to the custard to melt during cooking. Substitute cocoa powder for the powdered sugar used for dusting the puff pastry.
- White chocolate - Add a white chocolate bar to the custard to melt during cooking.
- Bourbon - Add a tablespoon of Bourbon to the custard during cooking.
- Cinnamon - Mix a tablespoon with the icing sugar used for dusting the puff pastry. Add a teaspoon of cinnamon to the custard during cooking.
© 2020 Ryan Fanus
Isibane Bergen from Western North Carolina on October 21, 2020:
Looks so yummy!